In a nutshell
The Civil Society Accessibility Toolkit for Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 is designed to empower communities to actively participate in monitoring and reporting activities related to the achievement of Goal 16 Targets in their communities. Goal 16 promotes the creation of peaceful, just and inclusive societies, and attempts to reduce all forms of violence, increase access to justice, and establish transparent and accountable systems of governance.
What we do
The purpose of the Accessibility Toolkit is to raise awareness of the SDGs generally, and to identify how Goal 16 Targets can be used to protect people’s rights and improve sustainable development in their communities. In addition, the Tool provides trainees with the skills needed to monitor and report on the achievement of Goal 16 Targets in their communities.
How we do it
The Accessibility Toolkit was launched at the Human Rights Advice Centre in Orange Farm in August 2017. APCOF, together with UNDP, is in the process of developing a methodology to pilot the Toolkit in community advice offices across all nine (9) provinces to test its effectiveness and relevance to communities, and to identify whether it needs to be changed or modified in anyway to better suit the needs of communities. Our plan is for the pilot of the Toolkit to be completed by the end of 2018, so it can be rolled out across the country in time for the High Level Political Forum on Goal 16 in July 2019.
What we have achieved
Although the Toolkit is very much in its early stages, it has received widespread support from a large network of community based organisations, namely the National Alliance for the Development of Community Advice Offices (NADCAO), which is working diligently on the institutionalisation and operationalisation of CAOs across the country. The Toolkit is seen as a mechanism for elevating the expertise that exists within communities and providing them with direct access to influence safety planning, as well as monitoring and reporting processes relating to Goal 16.
What we have learned
Since the ultimate aim of the SDGs is to transform societies, people have a critical role to play when it comes to measuring progress towards Goal 16 Targets in their own communities. Often times, communities are excluded from monitoring and reporting, and are not given adequate opportunity to influence safety planning processes even though their lives are most directly impacted. This Tool aims to tap into the expertise of communities and create a way for people to influence the decisions that impact their lives.