Under the strategic pillar of Organizational Strengthening, we seek to enhance our operational capacity and effectively deliver on our advocacy and coordinative roles in Africa. In order to achieve this, we have over the years endeavored to maintain strong governance, management and administrative processes We work to strengthen the financial sustainability of the organization in order to continue serving and reaching the millions of blind and partially sighted persons in places where they need us most. We also seek to enhance our information management, communication and public relations in order to improve on our heritage, visibility and profile. These serve to drive the work of the Union towards achieving its purpose.
In line with this, we currently have an ongoing initiative with the Danish Association of the Blind (DAB). This initiative is aimed at strengthening the organizational capacity of the organization by improving communication and helping to build financial sustainability.
In order to maintain strong governance processes, all AFUB governance organs need to be operating effectively and constitutionally. According to the AFUB constitution, the AFUB board needs to meet at least once a year to deliberate on issues and offer oversight and strategic direction. For years, AFUB has relied on physical meetings for its board, these meetings happen at high costs and therefore their frequency is limited. Through its initiative with DAB, AFUB has sourced for a cost effective tele-meeting system that will allow for the board the meet more frequently at reduced cost so as to deliberate on substantive agenda relating to the Union’s management. The tele-meeting system will enhance communication flow between AFUB members, secretariat and board as pertinent updates can be frequently shared, meetings held as and when necessary, important agenda deliberated and strategic direction for the Union provided.
Additionally, our Communication and information Management Policy provides a framework for effective communication within AFUB. Its implementation will ensure that the Board, staff, members, partners, collaborators and the general public are well informed, understand how AFUB operates, support each other, carry out their tasks efficiently and work towards achieving the shared organizational vision. Improved communication leads to greater visibility.
In order to improve our financial sustainability, we have embarked on a rebranding process which will enhance our visibility and profile. We have been able to launch a new look website that showcases our work, results and impact on our beneficiaries.
Currently, we are in the first year of implementation of our three year resource mobilization strategy (2017 – 2019) which has as main objective to increase our Union’s income by strengthening the organization’s resource base.
We have been able to set up a dedicated fundraising team to focus its efforts solely on resource mobilization for the organization. Also, through our current initiative with DAB, the board and secretariat staff have benefited from resource mobilization and fundraising trainings. Well written grant applications, better negotiations and relationship-building skills, integration of internal revenue generation strategies into the organizational resource mobilization mix which skills result from this series of training’s will ultimately result in increased internal and external revenue for the organization.
In the last quarter of 2017, we will be celebrating AFUB’s 30th anniversary. This event will be a celebration of AFUB’s existence, work and impact on blind and partially sighted persons across the continent. This will be an opportunity for AFUB to showcase its work and therefore enhance its visibility, profile and image. To be able to keep serving the millions of blind and partially sighted persons across the continent, and go on to a higher level of reaching its target group in places where AFUB is most needed, we will be launching an endowment fund to ensure our financial sustainability for the next say 30 years.