Farmers and local government leaders trained on Advocacy and lobbying

… 70 attend workshop at ACAT Farm in Mbuluzi

Advocacy and Lobbying skills are necessary to ensure communities are able to achieve development goals that are appropriate and sustainable.

That is why PELUM Association in partnership with ACAT Lilima Swaziland conducted a 5-day training for 70 people from the various communities that ACAT operates in, on Advocacy and Lobbying.

The workshop was facilitated by experienced professionals from the PELUM Association Board including a representative from PELUM Kenya, PELUM Zimbabwe, PELUM Zambia, and PELUM Swaziland.

It was an advocacy training and workshop that consisted of seventy participants from different constituencies from the Kingdom of Eswatini and ran for a week at the ACAT Training and Demonstration Centre in Mbuluzi.

Participants learned about the definition of advocacy and lobbying and the importance of conducting such activities at the local community level in order to achieve sustainable development goals.

One key lesson of this training was that when it comes to meaningful change, patience is key and that following procedure and chain of command is very vital when it comes to delivering the message. The participant’s also learned about communication as a part of advocacy and lobbying. This included the different platforms for communication messages that the communities can use to be heard as a community, which includes print media, social media and word of mouth.

It was said that these platforms when one does not have access to the policymakers. It is one of the best ways to get the attention of our advocacy targets, decision-makers, local elected officials, private corporations and members of the government agencies. One also has to access the political situation of that particular community or country, so that the right procedure can be followed.

After voicing out the grievances monitoring and evaluation has to be done so that one can be able to trace the steps, which assist in knowing that everything is on the right track or some steps were missed. Advocacy is a process so the message must be clear, compelling, accurate and short. She added that lobbying is used when one speaks directly to the target, the target has to be available and willing to listen to what one has to say, so everything can be on the right track.