Drive to meet key UN goals.
BAHRAIN is stepping up efforts to train Non-Governmental Organisations in a bid to achieve United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDG's), it was announced yesterday.
The eight MDGs range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/Aids and providing universal primary education by 2015.
A blueprint was agreed by all the countries and leading development institutions, which Bahrain signed up to last year.
Central Informatics Organisation International Comparison Programme (ICP) co-ordinator Najma Janahi said the number of Bahrain's NGO's had skyrocketed in the last four years, but claimed most of the new groups don't have anything new to offer.
"NGO's have an important role to play in the country because their members come from within the community and they understand its problems," she said.
"Many of the NGOs have the will to help, but lack the vision.
"We hope to train them and empower them so that they can really be productive."
Bahrain is now planning to train NGOs through workshops and help them set up programmes that develop various sectors of the country.
Among targets included in the MDGs are eradicating poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, promoting gender equality and empowering women, reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, combating HIV/Aids, malaria and other diseases, ensuring environment sustainability and developing a global partnership for development.
The government's plan for NGOs was announced yesterday on the sidelines of a nine-day regional workshop on MDG statistical literacy for Central Statistical Organisations and media, which is taking place at the National NGO's Support Centre in Tubli.
A total of 27 people from 10 different societies in Bahrain, Yemen, Djibouti and Saudi Arabia are participating in the workshop.
It is being conducted by United Nations Development Programme policy adviser for poverty reduction Adib Nemeh, as well as Centre for Arab Women Training and Research communication and information officer Atidel Majbri.
"The workshop aims to train NGOs so that they in turn can take what they have learnt and teach other NGOs," said Ms Janahi.
"Human development is the basis of building any civilisation and NGOs have an important role in achieving them."
Ms Janahi said the Social Development Ministry gives NGO's more than BD200,000 as financial support.
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