Explore Lessons Now

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Bringing together 10 years of useful lessons learned from UNDEF civil society projects

Featured Lesson

Youth grow up: put in place a strategy to replace participants

The major impact of the project was the successful “fellowship” established, with more than 100 youth fellows trained to become leaders and agents of change in their communities. The project …
design elections youth research results budget sustainability monitoring media women government planning collaboration impact management advocacy rights capacity participation adapt gender inclusion risk partnership training

Establish a constructive relationship with government authorities to enhance the reputation of CSOs

The constructive approach to working with government adopted by the grantee and its partners, was in keeping with Vietnamese political culture, and helped to strengthen the respect of government officials …

ICTs have the potential to strengthen the power of women and are under-exploited in Haiti today. Their demystification increases and strengthens the capacity for action, of relations and self-esteem of …

Compromise is often a necessary element of successful advocacy processes. Imperfect legislation for pedestrian’s rights can be better than no legislation, particularly when amendments can be introduced later. The original …

A CSO’s search for sustainability is never-ending. Every new project should include the “seeds” – innovative strategies – of future sustainability. Additionally, since securing funds from a specific international donor …

Consider revenue generating mechanisms including: membership fees; services fees; and private sector support; and build on project success to develop spin-off products that can be presented to international donors.

Consider developing formal partnerships with research organizations or think tanks, particularly those specialized in related topics such as public transportation.

Ensure that projects explicitly consider and raise awareness regarding the differentiated needs of vulnerable groups and establish partnerships with women’s organizations and CSO’s representing other marginalized communities.

Getting a law passed is only the beginning. Monitoring and further advocacy may be needed to ensure the law is implemented.

There is value in courting controversy: Strategies seen as controversial can generate more media buzz and can capture public attention.