In September 2021, Foundation for Civil Society completed the development
of its strategic plan for 2022 to 2026. The new plan marks the beginning of
the organization’s 4th strategic period.
The idea to establish the Foundation for Civil Society (FCS) was born out of
a confluence of purpose between some leaders of the civil society movement and a group of Development Partners in 2002. This was motivated by amongst others a need to enhance CSOs engagement in national poverty reduction programs, increase ‘development aid’ harmonization, as well as to streamline Development Partners (DPs) support to CSOs. FCS was thus conceived as an intermediary support mechanism for CSOs in Tanzania.
FCS was registered as a legal entity in September 2002 and started its operations in January 2003 and has over the years grown to be a renowned independent Tanzanian Not-For-Profit Development Organization that is anchored in Tanzanian civil society. Since its inception, FCS has contributed immensely to the capacity strengthening of the civil society sector in Tanzania thereby (in) directly enabling CSOs and citizens to become key driving forces for positively influencing democratic governance in Tanzania and better quality of life for the majority of the citizenry. FCS has reached over 30 million beneficiaries during the last 19 years with an extensive reach on the grassroots as well as incorporation of very small
grantees (CSOs) which could rarely receive support from elsewhere.
External reviews have confirmed that FCS managed to take on a civil society leadership role and remained engaged at various national level issues despite the challenging socio-economic and political context where there was a clear “shrinking space” in the operation of the civic interventions in Tanzania between 2016 -2020. FCS was able to significantly contribute to good governance processes.
The work of FCS has been supported by various DPs amongst them the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) and the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida).
Between 2016 and 2020, FCS worked with over 400 CSOs
from across Tanzania and achieved significant results in making local government authorities (LGAs) more responsive and improving their delivery of services; combating gender-based violence and enhancing social inclusion; enhancing disabled people and young people’s access to livelihood opportunities; increasing women’s access to land; and supporting initiatives with effective mechanisms to diffuse natural resource and political tensions.
The final evaluation of FCS’ Strategic Plan (2016 – 2020) assessed FCS favorably in terms of relevance, coherence and coordination, efficiency and effectiveness, as well as impact and sustainability, and contained a number of useful analyses which have been fed into the development of this new strategy (2022– 2026).
Through this strategic plan, FCS wants to consolidate its long-term sustainability and re- orient itself to its original purpose of creating a conducive environment for the poor and voiceless people to be heard and influence their own development agenda. FCS aspires to effectively complement government and DPs’ efforts towards poverty reduction as set out in Tanzania’s main development frameworks: Vision 2025 and the Five-Year Development Plan 2021-2026.