Gbarnga — On Friday, August 23 it was a dream-come-true for many when Forum Syd Liberia, a non-governmental organization, signed grants agreement to provide the first direct support to nine Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).
The support is being provided under the 'Sustainable Ownership Program', with funding from the Swedish Embassy near Monrovia.
The total value of the grants that will be provided by Forum Syd to the different CSOs under this funding window is around 1,800000 SEK (one million eight hundred thousand Swedish Krona), which is US$200,000.
Six of the grantees each receive sub grants totaling 250,000 SEK, while three grantees are being supported with seed grants in the tone of 100,000 SEK.
Grantees will use the support to develop their institutional capacities by strengthening their internal controls and governance structures.
The grants will also contribute to the empowerment of marginalized communities and groups to understand their rights, and demand duty-bearers to ensure accountability, inclusion, and transparency in the use and the management of natural resources to curtail environmental degradations, protect biodiversity and mitigate the impacts of climate change.
An estimated 12,000 people, over fifty percent (50%) of whom are females, will be the primary beneficiaries of the different projects that will be implemented by the CSOs.
The agreement signing ceremony took place in Gbarnga, Bong County Central Liberia, and it was witnessed by local government authorities from Bomi, Bong and Grand Gedeh Counties where the grantees are based as well as the representative of the Swedish Embassy near Monrovia-Charles Lawrence.
Jennet O. Paye, Executive Director Women Care Initiative (WOCI), who spoke on behalf of the grantees, thanked the Swedish and Forum Syd for the support.
And she told her colleagues "go back and let the communities and the marginalized feel your impact"
Meanwhile, Charles Lawrence who spoke on behalf of the donor also commended Forum Syd.
"The embassy is impressed by how far Forum Syd has come in such a short period of time," he said.
Lawrence then cautioned the grantees to use the support for the better of the target beneficiaries and to make their institutions viable and responsive to the needs of the marginalized.