In West Africa, people are faced with problems related to access to information and sexual and reproductive health services on a daily basis. In such a situation, many local civil society organizations detect these problems, take up the issue to voice the people’s problems, alert and inform policy makers to identify appropriate solutions in order to have a positive impact.

But it is important to point out that in this area, there is no platform for sharing experiences to improve advocacy strategies and make advocates understand the effectiveness of advocacy.

Since states are accountable to their people, one of the main areas of advocacy is to respect their national and international commitments. However, it remains difficult to carry out advocacy activities on reproductive health issues because of socio-cultural barriers and also due to lack of a strong structure to financially support advocacy activities.

It is therefore clearly evident that steps such as a survey on advocacy needs and the involvement of all community levels (local, religious and customary leaders, champions, students and their parents) to develop communication support material needs to be respected in order to succeed. “In its advocacy strategies, RAES NGO takes up the task of voicing the needs of the target populations,” said Ms. Mbathio Diaw, the RAES NGO Director during the webinar on the “Status of advocacy in Francophone West Africa: what is needed to accelerate African approaches to advocacy in the region?” which was organized by Advocacy Accelerator.

Given that many states do not allocate budgets to effectively support advocacy strategies and that there are no developed national advocacy strategies, all stakeholders need to think about putting in place a comprehensive framework for exchange and harmonization of experience sharing at regional level.

This blog was written by Sohaibou DIANE, Ratanga Club leader in RAES NGO. Some of the blogger’s works can be accessed via