On 2nd October 2020, FCS launched the Civil Society Resource Center in Dodoma. The event was officiated by the registrar of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) Ms Vickness Mayao. The Centre is a one-stop centre for information and knowledge hub for different stakeholders; local communities Civil Society Organizations, policymakers, private sector, academic and research institutions, government officials, the international community, citizens, etc., to access, embrace, learn and support the work for the civil societies and philanthropy in Tanzania.
The Centre is a hub for relevant information regarding Tanzanian civil society organizations, their operations, particularly regulatory frameworks and coordination by relevant government institutions and offices. The Centre also provides CSOs with advisory services, and training to CSOs to understand statutory requirements better and subsequently become more compliant with the laws, policies and procedures governing their operations.
In her speech, Vickness Mayao said, “This Centre will help stakeholders, including the government to acquire the information on the Civil Society Sector. I’d also like to congratulate Foundation for Civil Society for the contribution given to the country for it has led to poverty reduction. The government will ensure that CSOs operate in a conducive environment by having laws, policies and guidelines that can help their activities develop further.”
Her speech also appealed to CSOs to uphold transparency and accountability in their activities, stating that GOV and CSOs are key development partners.
Speaking during the event, Foundation for Civil society president Dr Stigmata Tenga told the invitees further of the work done by the Civil Society sector as she said, “Civil society organizations contributions to communities and individual people is huge. For instance, In FCS’s journey of 18 years, we have given grants to 6,000 CSOs in all regions of Tanzania, both mainland and Zanzibar. We have managed to champion FCS’s motto, ‘facilitating partnership for development’ by bridging the knowledge gap on the role of civil society actors in development, thereby enhancing their participation in poverty reduction efforts. FCS has broadly catalyzed civic engagement, protected vulnerable groups and improved livelihoods. Having the resource centre in Dodoma will further complement to its role as mentioned earlier and strengthen FCS’s cause. The resource centre will help document these efforts so that they are known and shared with the public“.
She added that the resource centre will be useful in capacity building and access to relevant information. She stated that there is a lot of information and publications in the government offices that important to the Centre, she appeal government for support to attain the documents.
In his speech, FCS Executive Director Francis Kiwanga Said,” Having worked for the last 18 years within the social development space, Foundation for Civil Society has achieved a lot, encountered several challenges and learnt a lot lessons. All these ups and downs have made the organization to think of having a resource Centre, which will help Civil Society players in the sector to develop further“.