Strategic options for NGOs: advancing the ICPD at 15

NGOs have played a central role in the development, promotion and implementation of the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) since

the time it was developed in Cairo in 1994. The diversity of NGOs' perspectives, functions, scope, origins, missions and goals from around the world have created a comprehensive approach to SRHR that is vital for the full implementation of the ICPD Programme of Action. Now, fifteen years later, the role of NGOs is more important than ever to achieve the goals and objectives articulated in Cairo.

On September 2 to 4, 2009, 400 leaders of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) from more than 130 countries came together in Berlin for the Global Partners in Action NGO Forum. The Forum served as a venue for NGOs to exchange information, share best practices, and collaboratively strategize how to secure political and financial investment in sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).

National and regional discussions were held before the Forum, where thousands of people shared inputs from regions around the world. A Youth Symposium also took place before the Forum, where young advocates agreed on priorities for ensuring the health and rights of young people worldwide. During the Forum, participants took part in 24 workshops and other participatory events, all of which facilitated a highly inclusive and participatory process. The feedback from each of these events, along with the wealth of information provided by the 2000 applicants, was the raw material for drafting the Forum's two outcome documents: the Berlin Call to Action and the Strategic Options for NGOs.

The SONGS identify five priority areas for NGO action
1. Monitor, evaluate and hold governments, donors, financial institutions, multi-lateral agencies, and for-profit health organisations accountable to commitments on SRHR for all
2. Influence policy outcomes to ensure SRHR for all
3. Strengthen partnerships, coalition building and harmonization of actions and strategies
4. Strengthen civil society and constituency engagement and refine the role of NGOs in promoting SRHR for all
5. Develop evidence-based advocacy messages and strengthen communications strategies to promote SRHR for all.

For the complete text, download the documents from the NGO Forum website.

 


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