G8 NGO face-to-face meeting day 1

Oct 29-30 face-to-face meeting of NGOs from each of the G8 countries except France.
Very interesting and informative.
Get info about the G8 NGO forum here: http://www.g8ngoforum.org/english/

It started with an intro to the Japanese nonprofit ngo sector and the status of advocacy in Japan. Takumo from Oxfam J apparently did a great job and I wish I had not missed it. I would love to have him as a speaker in 2008. Reps from each of the other countries followed up with info on the progress of their work related to the MDGs and/or increasing ODA. This was very informative.

Session 5 started with an overview of objectives and the pillars of campaigning. Participants on the campaign we then started a break out session where groups of people from different countries shared campaign experience and talked about what worked and what did not. I worked with people from Japan and Italy. Very interesting!

A list was then compiled of the various tactics. When the lists were reviewed, the most apparent strengths are when campaigns are developed using a multi-level multi-stakeholder collaborative professional approach. Weaknesses seem to come from the lack of strategic planning and capacity development in advance of campaign actions.
The main exception noted was when a professional campaign is run on a non-winnable issue.
It was very interesting to hear from people from different countries about what works does not work. Actually similar point came up again and again by people from different countries.

Session 7 started with an overview of possible tactics that are being used in Canada and the US. We then transitioned to questions and comments about what could and could not be done in the socio-political Japanese context.

Some of the areas that need development include:
More broad based coalitions
A deeper support base
A deeper understanding of the issue among members of the general public
Working more closely with the private sector
Creating a broader understanding of the need for advocacy
And working with organizations that are not already part of this network.

How this was going to be put into action was not readily apparent however.

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