Cross Learning Workshop involving the Togo and Benin MCLD Chapters

December 8, 2021

In November 2021, leaders from two West Africa chapters held a first-ever joint in-person workshop to deepen their understanding of CLD and review progress. The Benin Chapter was established in early 2017, and was instrumental in supporting the formation of the Togo chapter in 2019.

Introduction of the participants

Participants were requested to introduce themselves with the following information: Name & surname, Institution & chapter, Phone &E-mail address, The Greatest dream that one would accomplish if the resources and the power were not any limit. (see list in appendix 1 and photo in appendix 2):

Day 1 accomplishments

Share the content of the MCLD Benin Chapter report for January-August 2021 with the participants of the workshop 

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As a prelude to the presentation of the mid-term report of the MCLD Benin Chapter, the following questions were asked to nourish the reflection of the participants and clarify the background of the workshop. 

• Why CLD?

• What CLD is, and what CLD is not?…

It has been underlined that the success in facilitating the CLD practices mostly lies in the knowledge and implementation of specific tools and principles.

The following could be mentioned:

– The theory of change of the CLD

– The six conditions for change

– CLD assessment tool (……..,) –The characteristics of the CLD;

– Collective Impact 3.0 principles, etc…

The questions related to the MCLD Country Chapter development (legal recognition, internal organization to encourage the co-creation process, information sharing within the Chapter, resources mobilization were also mentioned for the participants to keep them in mind, and plan due actions accordingly.

Presentation of the mid-term report

January –August 2021 of the MCLD Benin Chapter (report available)

The report was presented and prompted the following open questions for the MCLD Togo chapter:

1- Does the MCLD Togo Chapter want to opt for the development of a Strategic Plan? If so, what would be the relevant period for this? If not, what approach to pedagogical learning should be taken? What are the priority thematic areas the MCLD Togo Chapter would like to focus on while developing the strategic plan?

– Based on the previous reflections of the MCLD Togo Chapter (documents available), and the preliminary ideas of resources mobilization within the Chapter, the Workshop recommends to plan and hold a virtual meeting where the MCLD Togo Chapter will be oriented on the request and use of the funds that the MCLD offers to support the dynamic in implementing relevant and needed actions to make the Chapter moving forward.

2- How does the MCLD Togo Chapter members plan to participate in events organized by other Chapter members, in other to support each other, and particularly to take advantage of learning from each other?

3- Does the MCLD Togo Chapter opt to train its members / members on the dissemination of CLD tools, and particularly the CLD assessment tool?

4- How does the MCLD Togo Chapter intend to mobilize new civil society organizations (organizations that are not founding members of the Chapter) and encourage them to join the MCLD Togo chapter?

5- It has been suggested the reflection be extended to the following points: 

5.1- What interest do the International NGOs founding members of the MCLD Togo Chapter continue to show to the Chapter development?

5.2- When does the MCLD Togo Chapter plan to get involved in the National Chapters monthly virtual meetings? 

5.3- What strategies does the MCLD Togo Chapter is adopting and implementing for resource mobilization? 

5.4- What specific support does the MCLD Togo Chapter expect from the MCLD Regional Coordination or from the Permanent Secretariat of the Global MCLD?

6- Call for registration on the MCLD West Africa French speaking countries platform

As a reminder message, the MCLD Togo Chapter members are encouraged to register on the MCLD platform. 

The MCLD West Africa Regional coordination is available and will be pleased to bring any needed support in that regard.

Day 2: 

Before coming to the plan activity for day 2, the inputs / conclusions of day 1 were reviewed. 

The reviewed inputs / conclusions of Day 1 is the one mentioned above.

The activities implemented of Day 2 include:

 A- Share four specific initiatives to help operationalizing the co-creation process within the Chapter

1- thematic areas groups for co-creation purpose (MCLD Benin Chapter thematic groups available)

2- The ‘’Conférence de rédaction’’ = “Editorial conference groups’’ (the operationalizing paper available and shared with the participants – see appendix 3); 

3- The Monthly MCLD Chapter management Team (the operationalizing paper available and shared with the participants – see appendix 4).

B- Share specific tools to guide mapping / framing the MCLD interventions / operations

B1- MCLD theory of change (theory of change available and shared with the participants)

B2- Six conditions of system change / Water of system change (Six conditions of system change available and shared with the participants – John Kania, Mark Kramer, and Peter Senge, June 2018)

C- Share specific tools for localizing development and for shifting power purpose

C1- CLD assessment tool (tool available and shared with the participants)

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D- Share specific tool for relevant mindset model for sustainable development purpose

D1- VCA (to share later one)

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Recommendations 

Mapping of the MCLD Chapter interventions with regard to:

  • the two (02) levels of the theory of change (advocacy partnership, facilitation partnership)
  • the three (03) levels (Explicit, semi-explicit and implicit) of the six conditions change. 

the interventions of each level of the theory of change will be put in regard to the three level of the ‘’six conditions  of systems change’’ 

Day 3

‘’The MCLD Benin Chapter case study’’ July 28, 2021 – presented during the workshop is available. The presentation was appreciated by the participants as an inspiring example of how a chapter could work. 

DAY 4

• The participants from the MCLD Togo Chapter decided to return the conclusions of the Workshop to all the members of their Chapter in order to agree on the priorities to be integrated in the strategic plan, following a co-creation process. 

• In regard to that view, the MCLD Togo Chapter plan to value the logic of planning in action following the example of the MCLD Benin Chapter. It appears obvious to update and enrich the implementation bases of the MCLD strategic plan taking into account the contribution of the Chapter members. 

The strategic plan readjustment will be on a periodical bases. (Mid-term review is mostly valued). 

This does not exclude the development of a classic strategic plan if the resources are available. However, this plan will remain subject to the co-creation process over time.

Prioritized ThematicsWhyWhatHowObservations
Governance  Large spectrum of impacts (Nutrition, health, education, agriculture, economy…) Accountability Activate communication through accountability sessionsTraining for both community and local council to be involved in efficient accountability  – Input from the MCLD learning and co-creation group -Concept note being finalized-Research for partnership and resources mobilization
Nutrition  Large spectrum of impacts… (health, education, local economy…)  Super food from local vegetables and crops(nature / local based solutions for adequate diet and local economy development) Information about local  vegetable and crops with high nutrient components.Processing super foods with the involvement of community, universities and Private sectors-Carnival and festival for promoting  local Super Foods – Input from the MCLD learning and co-creation group -Concept note being finalized, -Involvement -Research for partnership and resources mobilization
Health and community wellbeing including Covid-19    
Climate change and environment     
Local economy development   

Appendix 1 : list of participants

NAME & SURNAMEINSTITUTION & CHAPTERTHE GREATEST DREAM THAT ONE WOULD ACCOMPLISH IF THE RESOURCES AND THE POWER WERE NOT OF ANY LIMIT
AHOUANSOU JustianaAssociation des Femmes Unies pour le Développement (AFUD) – Chapitre MCLD Bénin-To make Africa a developed continent, not lagging behind or at the mercy of other continents;-transform all that is negative in all human being into a positive dimension including the use of metaphysical forces,-stop definitively covid-19-develop the spirit of initiative and mutual aid among human beings
BOUTOU Kwamivi Sonkudé ClaudeInstitut de Formation et de Recherche pour le Développement Durable (IFORDD) – Chapitre MCLD Togo-To make the whole world a paradise where peace, love, equality between nations, peoples, races and ethnicities reign;-a world without war, without disease-especially a united / non-balkanized / borderless Africa
TOSSOU Béranger Youth Service Africa – Chapitre MCLD BéninChange behavior, ways of doing things and mentality to have a good development of grassroots communities
CHAKPLA Essi Mansan SénaONG Association d’Appui aux Initiatives Locales (ONG AIL) – Chapitre MCLD TogoChange the mentality of youth so that there is sustainable development in the most remote rural areas.No more violence against womenGuaranteed accommodation for all children (orphans….)
DJOHOSSOU PascalThe Hunger ProjectMCLD-West AfricaTo ensure that in the hearts of all human beings (women, men and children) there is overflowing joy, and that there is dignity supported by totally disinterested solidarity
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Appendix 3: The ‘’Conférence de rédaction’’ = “Editorial conference groups’’

The ‘’Conférence de rédaction’’ / ‘’Editorial conference’’ is initiated to gather chapter members who will draft concepts note that fully reflect community aspirations.

The ‘’conférence de rédaction’’ aimed through context analysis to identify two (02) types of actions:

  • Short term interventions

Those actions will be implemented by chapter members through consortium or separately by each Civil Society organization.

This will contribute to amplify improved projects implementation that will take advantage of the CLD tools.

Short term actions with the backup of the CLD tools will contribute directly to the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals.

  • Mid-term and long term interventions

This will result from the common voice of the MCLD Bénin Chapter and actions needed will engage each and all chapter members.

Let’s mention some examples of short term actions and mid-term and long term actions about Nutrition

Short term actions: Production of nutritious crops, processing, marketing,…

Mid-term and long term actions: Local super Food Festival that engage 

  • Chapter members
  • Government 
  • Civil society organization through periodic event

The ‘’conférence de rédaction’’ / ‘’Editorial conference’’ will contribute to develop and disseminate diagnostic / analysis, strategies and actions papers from community aspirations that will be shared with all stakeholders including the funding agencies that will be receiving request for support / funding.

An initial though is to create the ‘’Editorial conference’’ groups beside the existing thematic co-creation and learning group. Yet the chapter members who participated in the workshop held on October 12, 2021 at Hotel du Lac, didn’t find relevant to put in place other work groups while there is a need to make operational the existing thematic co-creation and learning groups. 

We concluded that the ‘’conférence de redaction’’ will rather be the way to really activate the ‘’Thematic co-creation and learning groups’’ put in place in 2019.

Readjustment will be needed to make sure that the prioritized topics (…) for the MCLD Benin Chapter strategic plan will be fully covered.  ‘’Resources persons’’ will be identified to support the ‘’editorial conference’’ groups.

The ‘’conférence de rédaction / Editorial conference’’ will definitively ELEVATE COMMUNITY ASPIRATIONS to the attention of all stakeholders including the funding agencies.

The reviewed co-creation and learning groups which will henceforth operate in the role of editorial conference groups are the following. 

Appendix 4: The Monthly MCLD Chapter management

The chapter is self-guided and the co-creation process is a core management process involving the chapter members in running the chapter on a democratic and inclusive way.

The facilitation is led by the MCLD Benin Chapter Permanent Secretariat hosted within the West Africa Regional Coordination.

The Permanent Secretariat of the MCLD Benin Chapter is made up of the West Africa Regional Coordinator acting as the Permanent Secretary of the Chapter, and one (01) Assistant (part-time), one (01) Driver (part-time) and a vehicle’s Guarding person.

The involvement in the monthly Team will be on voluntary basis and free of charge for the MCLD.

As we plan to embrace more activities, need is to strengthen the co-creation process and to make sure that we take advantage as much as possible of the resources available within the chapter.

For that purpose, the Chapter will make sure that twelve (12) monthly MCLD Chapter Management Teams are put in place and each of them will actively support the implementation of the chapter activities on a monthly basis.

This Team will be supporting the Permanent Secretariat in the implementation of initiatives and activities planned by the MCLD Benin Chapter.

Each monthly Team need to plan specific activities in relation with the Permanent Secretariat and will report to all chapter members through the Permanent Secretariat before handing it over to another Team.