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West Africa Civil Society Institute Strengthening Civil Society


A representation of our Next Generation Interns (photo: WACSI)

A representation of our Next Generation Interns

Grooming Tomorrow’s Leaders Today

“Leadership and learning are indispensable”-John F Kennedy. This has been the driving force that has pushed WACSI to invest its resources in addressing the leadership deficit within the West African region. 

In 2008, WACSI designed and launched the Next Generation Leadership Programme (NGLP). It consisted of the 6-month Next Generation  Internship (NGI); the middle-level leadership training, the Civil Society Leadership Institute (CSLI); intergenerational mentoring; and a Next Generation Research Fellowship for young researchers to promote leadership and governance for civil society within West Africa.

In the 10 years since its inception, the internship programme has graduated 32 people from 13 countries all over Africa. Graduates from Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon,Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Togo, Mali, Liberia and Zimbabwe have returned to their respective countries, hungry to make a positive impact in their communities. Most of the graduates are working in various institutions across the region, applying what they have learnt to plug leadership gaps where they may be found.

In 2015, with the support of the Ford Foundation, WACSI initiated the process of mentoring and coaching middle level civil society professionals through the CSLI to strengthen their leadership competencies. Today, 38 persons have graduated from the programme and are making strides in their areas of influence.

The Next Generation Research Fellowship, which was piloted in 2017, is designed to provide opportunities to engage practitioners and scholars, bridging the gap between theory and practice. The fellowship aims at providing fellows with practical knowledge to bring contextual evidence into their research, providing invaluable insight to help civil society shape policy intervention.

WACSI seeks to continue grooming the next generation of West African leaders for years to come, transforming the governance landscape in the region. The Next Generation Leadership Programme seeks to build leaders capable of translating the vision of a strong, prosperous and well governed West Africa into reality.

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  • Akosua Darkwaa

    Great guys!

Resource Centre

The Institute has a resource centre that is open to civil society actors in the region. It serves as a library of civil society documents, research reports and edited volumes that are accessible to both individuals and organisations. The Institute has partnered the Foundation Centre to provide online learning resources and a database of grant giving institutions in the United States of America.

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