From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Education For All Coalition (EFA-SL) Holds Regional Consultation Ahead of AGM
By Bampia Bundu
Nov 23, 2010, 17:04

Education For All Coalition (EFA-SL), a leading civil society movement has concluded a regional consultative conference in preparation for the coalition’s 2010 Annual General Meeting.  The preparatory forum which brought together stakeholders from both regional and district memberships was held on Friday 17th November held at the Grassroots Gender Empowerment Movement Hall, John Street in Freetown.

In his presentation, EFA Coordinator, Mr. Joseph Kobina said the objective of the meeting was among other things to remind members of their obligations that make them eligible for participation in all the coalition’s activities, especially in electioneering process at the AGM and to strategize ways of expanding the membership beyond its current size; as well as to bridge existing communication lapses between the coalition’s secretariat and the regional/ district networks.  “This forum will also serve as a platform for the membership to familiarize with respective individuals from the various regions in the country,” he noted, saying by that way they would be able to strategize the implementation of series of programmes and projects in the districts.

Mr. Kobina also revealed that such regional meeting helps the dissemination of campaign and advocacy materials and information for effective advocacy; link members with partners operating in the regions where the members are active and create opportunities for effective communication between the regions and districts networks. On EFA’s strategic plan, the Education Officer, Mr. Sheik Bobor Kamara revealed that the 2011-2013 package, which he said is the second to be developed by the coalition since its inception is their overall programme strategy for the next three years.  “This is a key policy document that guides the work of EFA-SL in order to achieve our vision,” he informed, adding that since the 2006-2009 plan was successfully implemented, the 2011 to 2013 plan’s implementation will extend beyond 2013.

Mr. Kamara described education as a fundamental human right which is central to the development of individuals and the society for which reason a number of international legal and policy instruments have been adopted that urge governments across the world to ensure that education is accessed to all as part of the drives to meet the Millennium Development Goals.  He said the coalition’s focus for the next three years will be on advocacy and campaign on education financing by using their current data-base of existing CSOs working in the education sector to boost their membership base.

This is the third in a series of similar consultative meetings at regional levels by the Coalition. The final one will be held in Makeni City n the North.

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