In 2011, the wave of public protest across the Middle East and North Africa did very little to change realities on the ground for people demanding meaningful change. However, what arose out of that time was a more determined civil society sector. The region has seen that when people mobilize, it ‘is’ possible to transform unfair systems and political regimes; the challenge now lies in confronting decision makers to ensure accountable measures are in place in governmental structures and that people have a space in which to freely air their opinions and challenge those in power.
ActionAid is working with civil society actors across the region to strengthen young people’s participation in governance; inspiring them to become active citizens and advocators for change. Through our civil society partnerships, we create awareness of human rights and power relations, offering a space for reflection, professional development and motivation to work with youth and social change.
ActionAid believes that poverty is politically driven. Where people cannot have a space in which to air their voice or to confront those in power, we will never see durable change in the region. Meaningful change has to be lasting change. That’s why we’re working with civil society actors to challenge the very systems in which they operate in.