In line with our mission to promote self-reliance; we explicitly focus on strengthening local capacity by fostering partnerships with local partners as much as possible. Currently, the local partners we are working with in our various programmes include indigenous NGOs, Community Based Organisations (CBOs), Village Development Committees (VDCs), Churches, Faith-based associations/groups and other ad hoc committees for developing local, social or economic services such as Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs) and water source and sanitation committees. Our local partnerships also include a close collaboration with local and national government institutions and non-state actors.
Some of the ways we strive to strengthen local partnerships include:
• In-house training workshops facilitated by IAS staff focusing on programme development, fund raising and/or organizational management;
• On-the-job training in which local NGOs and government officials at local level work alongside IAS staff in project implementation;
• Joint development of projects including project design, proposal writing and project implementation;
• Fund raising and networking on the behalf of the local NGOs as a means to increase their resource base.
Since 2011 we also have dedicated staff in all our countries responsible for partnership development. We have established an IAS Partner Network where partners across regions where we operate can come together and learn, share experiences, build strategic alliances and be equipped – something which has already strengthened ourselves and our partners. A Partnership Handbook has been developed in 2013 and guides how we work with partners.