After the revolution: civil society and the new approach to local development in the region Kroumirie Mogods , Cap Négro / Cap Serrat MCPA | WWF

After the revolution: civil society and the new approach to local development in the region Kroumirie Mogods , Cap Négro / Cap Serrat MCPA

Posted on
29 January 2012
After decades spent under an authoritarian stick, Tunisian civil society can finally enjoy an atmosphere of freedom and fulfill its role. In Tunisia, as elsewhere, the contribution of civil society in the democratic transition and in the structural transformation and the rural development of society is of considerable importance.

The Tunisian experience is rich in terms of rural development. This experience has led to encouraging results such as improved infrastructure, the opening up of rural areas, the improvement of the standard of living and production conditions of local communities. But a more structural side, the experience has had its limits. Field intervention methods have been marked by institutional complexities and a lack of involvement of local communities in the development process, with a tendency to view communities as mere recipients rather than as partners. It is, indeed, a complete break from an integrated approach to development and management of natural resources.

Currently, the state must respond to the changed new post-revolution national context, and take into account the emergence of civil society. Civil society must now take part in the new modes of governance of the country, to improve the effectiveness of its interventions including those related to rural development and natural resource management.

The authorities, the private sector and civil society organizations should play a more active role and help bring political decisions closer to the real needs and priorities of rural areas. Newly created development associations in rural areas of Tunisia, should be instrumental in the strengthening of the collective action capacity of rural population.

For the Kroumirie Mogods region, northwest of the country, a region rich with natural resources and low standard of living and development, the emergence of development associations since the revolution will play a leading mediator role between development projects and local communities. This will lead to a shift from a "top-down" development to a "bottum-up" one .

In the context of this new approach, the MedPAN South project in Tunisia has developed a new strategy for building local populations' capacity and development in and around the Marine and Coastal Protected Area (MCPA) of Cap Négro / Cap Serrat. This strategy includes four major stages with:
  • the identification of emerging associations in the regions of Sejnene and Nefza (in addition to the Tunisian Association of Artisanal Fisheries)
  • the capacity building of local associations representing local communities,
  • the continuation of the education program for Cap Négro / Cap Serrat MCPA school kids
  • And finally the development of implementation agreements for sustainable development projects for local people through these associations.

The Cap Negro / Cap Serrat emerging associations capacity building programme is build around five themes. At the end of this program, associations should be better equipped to develop strategies, implement them effectively and ensure their governance.
  • Theme I: The participatory and integrated approach of associative projects
  • Theme II: Mission vision and strategy of an association
  • Theme III: Legal, administrative, and accounting management aspects
  • Theme V: Life cycle of an associative project, preparation of the balance sheet
  • Theme VI: Fundraising, an indispensable resource for associations
  • Theme IV: Mobilization, volunteering and communication strategy.

The sessions will take place during the first quarter of 2012 and should gather several associations / participants.
- December 27 and 28 in Bizerte: Theme I
- 19-20 January 2012 Nefza: Theme II and III
- 21 -22 February 2012 in Bizerte: Theme IV and V
- 14-15 March 2012 in Tabarka: Theme VI

For further information, please contact Sami Dhouib, WWF Mediterranean, Tunis bureau
Coastal communities need support on Tunisia's north coast
© E.Parker / WWF