International IDEA with support from AusAID through its Africa Governance Fund organised a BRIDGE “Voter Registration” 5-day Workshop in Accra, Ghana. The workshop conducted in English was held from 11 July – 15 July 2011.
The aim of IDEA’s BRIDGE programme in Africa is to utilise the BRIDGE training curriculum as a means to build the capacity of election administrators from African Election Management Bodies. In addition it aims at building training skills and providing access to BRIDGE materials for electoral trainers through its Train the Facilitator programme. The project is part of an on-going collaboration between International IDEA and the African Union Commission. The partnership is outlined in a “Joint Activity Plan” (JAP) between the two organisations.
BRIDGE is the world’s foremost training curriculum on electoral processes. BRIDGE as a professional development tool designed especially for Election Administrators but can also be used with other stakeholders such as political parties, the media, civil society organisations and legislators.
Twenty five participants from election management bodies in West Africa, East Africa, Sudan and South Sudan attended the workshop.
The four individuals forming the Bridge facilitating team who prepared and delivered the course were:
The team had three EMB members and their backgrounds provided a good mix of institutional and field experience on all the themes of the course and this impacted greatly in the excellent and efficient conduct of the course. The facilitation team provided a positive environment and established very good relationships with the participants.
Most of the sessions were facilitated on a single-person basis, keeping always the option for the other facilitators to make additional comments, not just to help ensuring mutual support on the content side but also to allow a better dynamic of the group.
At the end of the workshop Kofi Kye-Duodu and Molly Nawe Kumakama both successfully completed their field work component of the accreditation process and were awarded certificates for full Accreditation as BRIDGE facilitators.
Two approaches were used to collect course evaluations from the participants: (i) written evaluation forms at the end of Day 1 and at the end of the course and (ii) verbal review/evaluation at the end of the day or prior to the start of a day.
The latter evaluation revealed the overall satisfaction of the participants both on the BRIDGE methodology of the workshop and the interest and treatment of topics. There was also a common opinion among the participants about the richness in the course discussions and debates brought by the diverse experiences of all the countries represented in the course.