MONROVIA: The SOS Children’s Villages in Liberia, and its partners, on Tuesday, November 5, 2023, began a four-day training workshop with focus on its 5-year National Development Strategy.
The workshop which is being held in Monrovia seeks to develop a long-term vision and impact.
The training is also dedicated to Validating key changes, identifying results, including targets, and to agree on the next steps for developing the strategy including its timeline.
Speaking at the start of the workshop, SOS Children’s Villages in Liberia National Director, Mr. Prosper N. Ndione, lauded Wimmiametta Saydee Tarr, Minister of Gender, Children & Social Protection (MoGCSP), Amadou Alasanne Cisse, Country Representative of UNICEF in Liberia, Madam Miriam Murray, Country Director, Plan International Liberia, Partners and Members of Child Protection Network for gracing to the occasion.
He also extended his sincere thanks and appreciation to the Government of Liberia (GOL), SOS Children’s Villages West Central and North Africa (WNCA), represented by Dr. Amavi Bada, the CVI Rep. Lome Cluster, Madam Severine Bojin-Tragus, FDC Director of SOSCVI – WCNA and other key staffs of the Regional Office namely: Madam Matilde SEMEDO, Programme Strategy & Management Advisor and Mr. Houedenou Germain, Evidence & Learning Advisor Programme Development – Evidence, Investment & Learning, for their steadfast leadership and support over the years.
“Special thanks to Hermann Gmeiner-Fonds Deutschland (HGFD), represented by Madam Helena Vidalic, for its long-standing support to improving the lives of children, young people and families in vulnerable situations here in Liberia,” he said,
The, SOS Children’s Villages in Liberia National Director told the gathering that recently they held dialogue sessions with all stakeholders and participants “on our programmes” in Liberia and we heard how our organization is impacting the lives of many people – including children, and families, among others .
According to him, despite these efforts, the general situation of children across the country is not at the level we all want it to be. Poverty is high – low nutritional diet, poor healthcare, lack of quality education, etc. – and climate change poses more risks to children than ever before.
He noted that in their engagement with children and stakeholders in the last few months, they talked about protection, education, empowerment, sanitation, and amongst others.
“ We take into account their concerns and must continue to work with communities, partners and stakeholders to effect change. These concerns should lay the foundation of what is expected of us in the coming five years, and it is upon all of us here to ensure that their voices are heard and acted upon,” he said.
He said they have an ambitious agenda that includes advocacy, partnership for quality care, repositioning our brand here in Liberia, and how the SOS Children’s Villages in Liberia can more effectively champion the rights of every child – especially children who have lost parental care or at the risk of losing it.
“SOS Children ‘s Villages is an international childcare and child protection organization whose vision is a world where “Every child belongs to a family and grows with love, respect, and security.” He stated.
Mr. Ndione disclosed that they have consistently aligned their work with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – mainly goal1 No 3- poverty, NO-4 Good health and well-being; Quality Education; 5: Gender equality; 8: Decent work and economic Growth; 10: Reduced Inequalities; and 17: Partnerships for the goals.
He pointed that together with partners, they all can work to achieve the SDG targets with the greatest impact for children and young people in our target group. We also support the country National Development agenda.
“We have invited you all here today to produce an ambitious but yet a quality strategic plan. If we do it together well – we will create something powerful together that will lead to an excellent 5-year strategy that we all can be proud of; I encourage all of us to remain focused,” he said.
He told the participants during the workshop, he will not be acting as a BOSS, rather a member of a team – working together with them to develop a new roadmap that will impact the lives of many more children.
“We have a brilliant team who will be leading us step-by-step through the process of developing our strategy. This team has worked hard to get us where we are today. The team has both local and international expertise,” he stated.