STRENGTHENING OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR THE BENEFIT OF OUR COMMUNITIES

Reorganisation and strengthening competencies were the themes of a two-day workshop with members of the Board of Directors and Dahari management at Mutsamudu.

From the beginning, the NGO has always been able to count on the support of its board of directors to back its projects and improve their chances of success. Its goal has continued to remain strong: to serve Comorian communities more effectively by shaping a productive, sustainable countryside and to drive forward the changes necessary to further our involvement.

A growing NGO should have more structure and should not ignore the role of the Board, which is so important for the management and success of any organisation. Sharing information, making the Board an instrument of change and giving it an active part in our undertakings, were, therefore, the underlying themes of the workshop and this is why the whole team made the journey.

Speaking of journeys, Paul Siegel also came to join us from the United States, to support the training and to help us identify the challenges involved. An expert on matters concerning cooperation between governing bodies at the heart of an NGO, Paul has spent his whole career in conservation in Africa, notably with the WWF.

More specifically, the workshop provided the opportunity to re-assess past relations between the Board of Directors and Management, to re-establish the purpose of each and to make this more transparent, and to help each member to understand their role within the management structure. We are convinced of it: the future of Dahari depends upon the cooperation and involvement of everyone, particularly of the members who are the eyes, ears and voice of the NGO. Through these initiatives, Dahari wants, therefore, to redefine the Board of Directors, as it were.

Indeed, the Board’s role goes far beyond the mere evaluation of results; it upholds frameworks (strategy, legal obligations, final authority), defines direction, ensures accountability (it has final responsibility for the actions of the organisation) and, finally, leadership.

What was the conclusion? It has become apparent that we must create and implement a plan of action to strengthen the Board in order to reinforce our internal organisation and thus our support for the communities. The members will meet again in a month’s time to examine these significant steps in detail and to embark on the first changes.

Everything is clearer; we understand that we all have a role to play and this workshop has not only restructured things but it has, in particular, allowed all of us to strengthen our commitment and involvement. We have been able to take the time together, which we didn’t necessarily do before, to examine doubts, questions, successes and difficulties. These two days have been a great help and we are very optimistic for the future.

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