The Civil Society Forum on Drugs (CSFD) organised an on-site Workshop on civil society advocacy from 23th to 24th November in Madrid, with the support from UNAD, International Drug Policy Consortium, Rights Reporter and AFEW.
Since advocacy is an important tool for civil society members to achieve their main goal of influencing public policies, this training workshop brought together representatives from Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the field of drugs in order to improve their capacities in formulating, implementing and evaluating advocacy actions.
Several participants came from the DPNSEE member organisations. The participants’ profile was:
- Civil society representatives and service providers in the field of drug use and drug demand reduction which have their main base of operation in an EU member state, EEA, acceding, candidate or potential candidate country(*). They are members of the Civil Society Forum on Drugs or related to one the members’ networks.
- Highly motivated to improve their capacities in the area of advocacy and will be able to implement and share gained knowledge and information within their organisation.
The workshop was an interactive training with open space to intervene and to create new tools for advocacy in a hostile environment. Excellent presentations were delivered by Peter Sarosi and Marie Nougier.
The International Network of People who Use Drugs (INPUD), Mainline, King’s College London, AFEW International, the South African Network of People who Use Drugs, AFEW Kyrgystan and Rumah Cemarah shared the results of a three year research programme exploring how community involvement impacts the quality and accessibility of harm reduction services for people who use drugs. The research Community Matters: Lessons from a Bridging the Gaps research programme, supported through the Bridging the Gaps II programme, was completed from 2018 through 2020 as part of a community-academic partnership across Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan and South Africa which were linked to a ‘rapid review’ of the literature on low and middle-income countries.
Evidence from the report shows how difference forms of community involvement across these three countries impact harm reduction access and quality, especially in low and middle income settings. This evidence base can guide the scaling-up of community involvement efforts globally in support of harm reduction targets.
The report has four core messages:
- More ambitious support is needed for expanded community involvement in harm reduction services
- Community involvement can support increased access and quality of harm reduction services
- Community leadership delivers research with impact
- Research agendas need to expand and methodologies need to adapt
To read the report, follow this link>>>.