Fellowthip programme for South Sudan, in front of the A-bomb dome in HiroshimaUNITAR Hiroshima Office Supports Civil Society with Multi-Sector Training Programmes

July 2017 - The UNITAR Hiroshima Office is increasing its focus on civil society engagement in its training programmes, always with a multi-sector approach that fosters dialogue between civil society and government, as well as private sector organizations. Fellowship programmes for South Sudan and Iraq, anti-corruption programmes for North Africa and the Sahel region, and a training programme on tsunami Disaster Risk Reduction for women from Small Island Developing States (SIDS) all bring together participants from civil society and other sectors. This multi-sector approach allows participants to improve mutual collaboration and communication between sectors for the betterment of their communities and nations.

In South Sudan and Iraq, developing a robust civil society is key to the stabilization and reconstruction of the countries. Civil society organizations can work to address needs such as healthcare or education in a given community, filling gaps that government alone sometimes cannot address. The Hiroshima Office’s trainings on social business and entrepreneurship, as well as communication, leadership, and team-building, for South Sudan and Iraq give participants skills to help make civil society organizations in their communities flourish. Sixteen percent of all South Sudanese Fellows come from civil society, as do 29 percent of all Iraqi Fellows.

Female participants in the training workshop on DRRThe Hiroshima Office’s training programmes on anti-corruption for North Africa and the Sahel region focus on the role of multi-stakeholder coalitions in the fight against corruption. Globally, government and civil society organizations are increasingly cooperating with each other in tackling corruption. Multi-stakeholder coalitions serve as a platform to pursue common reform goals, leverage political will, and mobilize citizens’ demand for accountability; they may also play a pivotal role in the eradication of corruption in the Sahel. Participants in the Hiroshima Office’s programmes were high-level individuals from government and civil society organizations that fight corruption.

Twenty-six senior female participants, selected from 14 Pacific SIDS, participated in the Hiroshima Office’s Women's Leadership in Tsunami-based Disaster Risk Reduction Training Programme in 2016. Participants from each country included one representative of government and one of civil society, in order to encourage the development of a community of practice, as well as national, regional, and supra-regional discourse. The training also aimed to increase women’s capacity to participate in civil society activities related to DRR.