ActionAid Liberia Conducts Training on Climate Change, Electoral Accountability

Norwu Harris, Youth Program Officer ActionAid Liberia (AAL).

Global Platform Liberia with support from ActionAid Liberia has concluded three days of capacity-building training for young people on Climate Change and justice as well as Electoral Accountability. 

Global Platform Liberia (GPL) is a learning space for youth-led activism. It supports movements, youth networks, organizations, and individuals who promote progressive social, political, and economic change in Liberia and around the world. 

The three days event which began from August 5 to 9, 2021, was organized by ActionAid Liberia in partnership with Global Platform Liberia. It brought together 16 young people from different Youth-Led organizations in Monrovia and its environs. Representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Democratic Institute (NDI), and Naymote Partners for Democratic Development facilitated the events. 

Speaking at the official opening of the event, Norwu Harris, told the gathering that the training workshop was aimed at deepening the understanding and build the capacity of young people in Climate Justice, Digital campaign, Electoral accountability including monitoring and tracking of duty bearer’s performance, among other things. 

Harris said the training was focused on using what she termed as a unique Human Rights-Based Approach and Feminist lens including Sexual Harassment and Exploitation Abuse (SHEA) and Safeguarding sessions that ActionAid applies to obtain required results. 

She extended thanks and appreciation to the facilitators from NDI, NAYMOTE, and the EPA for nourishing the young people with knowledge and skills to hold duty bearers accountable for their promises. As the debate continues to increase on climate change and justice, At least 16 young people have benefited from a 3-day of training on climate change and electoral accountability  

Meanwhile, Habakkuk, a participant who attended the training said “I am very happy to form part of this educative and innovative training on Climate change and electoral accountability."

"It is worrying to me to learn that out of the 15 counties we have in Liberia, 9 counties are vulnerable to climate change. Thank you to EPA for bringing this out, as Young people it is our duty to go back to our communities and concretize them on this issue so they see the reason why they should participate in the climate justice activities” he said. 

He added that over the years he has heard of several reports on the issues of climate change but was not educated about the cause and consequences of climate change and what can be done to safeguard the earth. He thinks much has not been done to enlighten the minds of citizens, especially young people to understand what climate change is. 

“I am grateful to be part of this training, I am now able to go back into my community share, and implement what we have learned.” 

On the issue of electoral accountability, Thelma Edwards, also explained that the three days event has deepened her understanding regarding elections matter, especially monitoring, tracking, and accountability. 

“With 2023 Presidential elections around the corner, as young people of Liberia who have been opportune to get such great knowledge and understanding in electoral accountability, we will be able to inform our communities on the importance of Social Contracts or Agreements. This will help us to have such agreements with all politicians who wish to participate in the upcoming elections”

Miss Edwards said many electorates in times past had not understood what electoral accountability is about, 

“This training has made me understand that elected officials are accountable to us, we never knew at the time when politicians used to come and make big promises, give us big of rice, T-Shirts, at the end when they are elected, it becomes a challenged for implementation of what they promised.” 

She said having acquired knowledge from the training; she will embark on a campaign in her community with the support from her institution and community to educate young people on electoral accountability including monitoring and tracking of progress. Thanks to GPL and Action Aid Liberia for the opportunity.

ActionAid Liberia together with Global Platform Liberia empowers young people in organizations, networks, and movements to challenge social issues and bring about social change across Liberia and in the Manor River Union.