When supporting electoral processes there is clear value in working “upstream” to cover, and connect, key aspects of the full electoral cycle (e.g. registration, awareness raising, monitoring, conflict prevention and resolution) before the election event itself. Where possible, this can also include linkages with initiatives promoting access to information and freedom of speech – i.e. ensuring that electoral choices are as well informed as possible and contribute to community dialogue and improving social cohesion. A new civil society platform for the Sahel, the Coalition citoyenne pour le Sahel, appears to be a promising forum just such interaction.