Sunday, January 8, 2012

Appreciation for the UNDP SPCBN Civil Society Outreach Initiative, 2008-11

Here are some of the thoughtul and appreciative notes from my Nepali NGO colleagues regarding the end of our work together on the Civil Society Outreach (CSO) component of the SPCBN project.  

At the start of the SPCBN project in late 2008/early 2009. there was great enthusiasm for initiating this civic education on the drafting a popular constitution among the thousands villages of Nepal, as well as a publicly stated desire to see that their voices and opinions were brought into the drafting of the original eleven CA Thematic Committee reports.  

However, as the constitution drafting process extended past the initial (optimistic...) two year deadline in May 2010, the donors and others felt that this work had -- by and large -- been accomplished.  

In addtiion, there were concerns expressed among certain sections of the political parties and international community that the delays in the writing of the constitution were partially due to the persistent demands of some of these historically marginalized communities to protect their rights and representation in the new constitution.  

Yet, throughout the drafting process, I'm proud to say that UNDP SPCBN has been at the forefront of ensuring a voice was given to these Dalit, Indigenous, Madheshi and remote area communities in the drafting of the new constitution, especially through their own local community-based organizations.  

More recently UNDP has provided support to the Constituent Assembly Dalit, Women's and Indigenous Caucuses to present their issues and concerns to their political party leadership.  Many of these issues, in fact, were collected from the VDC-level Democracy Dialogues that these NGO federations organized around the country.

Nonetheless, due to reduced funding and concerns that the process has been (possibly...) too participatory, when the draft constitution is approved by the CA -- hopefully in 2012 -- there will be a more limited public outreach.  

Unfortunately, it will be without the grassroots support that these fifteen NGO federations were able to provide to the CA and political parties.  Jointly these NGOs reached nearly half a million people across the country through the three CSO phases in 2009, 2010 and most recently in 2011 

Therefore, the words of appreciation that these NGO partners offer below to UNDP, SPCBN and those of us who had the privilege of guiding these respected NGOs over the past three years.

For me these were some of the most genuine partners I've had the honor of working with, as well as among the most enjoyable and political challenges of my professional years in Nepal...

Dear Keith jee, Wish you a very happy new year!

Working  with you as one of the CSO partners has been a wonderful opportunity for us. We were lucky that we could contribute in drafting the historical document of Nepal through this SPCBN project. We would like to thank you and your team for providing us the opportunity to bring the voices of the voiceless from different districts and also for the support and cooperation through out.

Wish you  the very best for the days ahead.

With regards, Sharmila Karki
Chairperson, Jagaran Nepal
Dear Keithji,  Namaste!

It is really very sad news for us that you are leaving SPCBN project. I know you from very early of my job career. I had worked in Indreni Service Society as a Motivator to Project Coordinator.  During that period I had got mountains of opprtunity to enhance my capacity and ultimately that opprtunities dirived me in present condition.  You had maintained strong policy to uplift deprived community and people during your work at Save the Children.  

And, you also gave us to reach each nook and corners of the nation to participate the people on constitution writing process from SPCBN Project too.  I always admire your working strategy.  I wish and am hopeful to work with you in near future.  With best regards, 
Tejendra Lama  Nepal Tamang Ghedung
Dear Keith Sir, Namaste.

I am very sorry to say good bye you in this regards. We (RDN Nepal) are very pleased to your support on a brilliant job on behalf of Nepali people specially the remote area of Nepal.  

RDN Nepal will miss you and hope we keep in touch to protect the rights of excluded people of Nepal which hope we collected by SPCBN project from 240 Electoral Region, 4000 VDCs and more than 200,000 people of Nepal.

Ganesh BK  RDN Nepal
Dear Sir,  Warm Namaskar

Good to hear your experience and thoughts from you.  Thank you.

Pramila Gachhadar TINF
Dear Keith Jee,

I am agree with your opinion, that coming and going is a natural process, but i will remember you for a long time for your great effort and support to not only us, for whole the nation. We will always sallute you for your great contribution for Nepal.  With best regards.

Kaushlendra Mishra  President
Federal Democratic Campaign
Dear Keith,

Namastey. Ke garney, Bidai bhannu naramailo lagchha.  ("Saying goodbye isn't so nice...") 

But, yes, life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes.

I feel sad to say bye..., however one has to say so at a certain point of time.  You are right in deed a great job has been done through SPCBN/CSO programs.  It was done smoothly despite the disruptive changing schedules in the course of time.  It was possible due to the strong support of SPCBN team that did have a good understanding and a high sense of support and cooperation.  It was a wonderful team indeed.  Myself and KYC people highly evaluate and appreciate it.  Thank you for everything.

Have a nice time. Hope to see you sometimes in future.  Best regards. 

Narayan Ninglekhu  KYC
Dear Keith Sir, Namaste

We are very sorry to say good bye you in this regards. We (NMA) are very pleased to your support from SPCBN project of UNDP.  NMA team and whole Magar community miss you and hope we keep in touch to protect the rights of excluded people of Nepal.  

Again thanking you for your great support us (Magar Community).  With warm regards.

Gyanendra Pun Magar
Secretary of NMA
Dear Keith Sir, Namaste

I highly appreciate you and SPCBN for your wounder contribution towards peace building and new constitution making process in Nepal.  In those days working with you as a partners CSOs we gained as much knowledge and experiences provided by you and your team. 

I hope working with you is not last but not the list, hope you and us will be working as a friends further days. Hoping to see your more progress and bright future!  

Lastly Happy New Year, 2012 to all your belongings!  Best Regards.

Dala Rawal  HCDA,Humla
Dear Keith Sir, Happy New Year 2012.

I never think you will be out of my soul, my mind and my heart.  I never forget that you bring me and NNSWA up to this position as a social person work for the social transformation. Wherever you are you will be with us and our mind to direction us for the upliftment of socially, economically and politically backwarded people in Nepal. 
Sincerely, Ashok Bikram Jairu  NNSWA
Namaste Keith Sir,
Finally the day came that you are bidding farewell to us and its our turn now. Going through your farewell note made me visit the past two years and made me nostalgic. I agree with you that we've made, with the support of SPCBN, valuable contribution to the Constitution Making Process in Nepal and I saw you there in pivotal place to support us with empathy.
We, CSO partners, especially representing the marginalized segment of the Nepali society will be missing you a lot in our future endeavours. It was a great opportunity for a person like me, who is in developing phase of career in the development field, to work with you. Your knowledge of Nepali society, state and of course, language deserve appreciation. A strong punch in your humour, how can I forget!
Our interest in bamboo is common which, I hope, will keep me in your contact in future. Hope to work with you in future. Wish you and your family a Happy New Year 2012!
Regards, Harka Raj Rai  KRY

Dear Keith Sir, Namaskar---

I couldn't write for long time as I dipped into your mail in such a way that I can't express. Going through your mail, I saw me everywhere where it is related with constitution building process of Nepal. At last I came to the conclusion that, in every pages, every part, every articles and sub-articles of the New Constitution, there is your contribution. 

In fact, the credit of including the voices of distance people in new constitution goes to you and we are happy for being part of this as we are also with you in the whole process for bringing such distance voices, unheard voices into new constitutions. The constitution drafting process is going on and hope for its success. We have already contributed too much for this.
So, thank-you for providing this opportunity, to be your part in this process. We hope for being in touch with you in future days too, and working together again to make history, for creating series of natural and spontaneous changes in our life, country and world.  Thank You

Nub Raj Bhandari  Project Manager (CSO)
Janaki Women Awareness Society (JWAS), Janakpur

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