Community-Driven Grants Program II
In February 2011, a group of lawyers in Benghazi, Libya led a protest to call for the release of one of their colleagues. As they marched through the city, hundreds joined what became the first citizen-led uprising of the Libyan Revolution. Within months, the government of Muammar Gaddafi fell and these same civic leaders undertook another challenge: building the new democratic Libya.
With support from the State Department’s Middle East Partnership Initiative, Creative launched the Community Driven Grants Program (CDGP) in September, 2011 to strengthen the capacities of civil society organizations at the center of that effort.
Through grants to partner organizations in Benghazi and Tripoli, CDGP promoted citizen participation in upcoming elections, computer skills for women, and vocational training for former fighters. Training activities brought organizations together to build core capacities in management and outreach.
Building on these successes, CDGP II is now expanding these initiatives in smaller cities across the country, with training activities particularly focused on strategies for using advocacy and government partnerships to increase government accountability at the national and local levels. It also encourages linkages and coalition building among regionally disparate civil society organizations.
Today, even amid renewed fighting among militias, Libya’s civil society continues to play a crucial role by supporting good governance at the local level. Through small grants and trainings, CDGP II continues to support their efforts to build a stable, democratic Libya that fulfills its citizens’ aspirations.
Libya’s Revolution ushered in an opportunity for civil society organizations to form, grow and represent their communities. With U.S. State Department support, Creative is working with the leaders of nascent groups to support their efforts to play a substantial role in this country’s developing democracy.
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