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FMA to train CSOs on collaboration, advocacy and security tools
14 May 2006

As part of its capacity-building programme, “Connect the DOTS (Development Organizations, Technology and Society),” the Foundation for Media Alternatives is set to conduct a training workshop for Philippine civil society organizations on advocacy and development tools and secure computing and online communications from June 14 to 17 at the National Computer Center in Quezon City.

Supported by the Association for Progressive Communications, Peace and Equity Foundation, and the Philippine Commission on Information and Communication Technology, the training-workshop intends to raise the awareness of CSO workers on the available online tools which can enhance and extend the campaigns for their different advocacies. This initiative likewise aims to equip them with the skill in responding to various vulnerabilities, threats, and risks which they encounter as they increasingly use the Internet and other media in communicating with their constituents and networks.

The training-workshop consists of two modules: The first deals with collaboration and advocacy tools such as content management systems, blog, wiki, polling, mailing lists and instant messaging. The second module covers the tools for secure computing and online communications. These include firewall, anti-virus, anti-spam, encryption, and anonymizers, among others. Much of the materials which will be used for this activity are culled from NGO-in-a-Box and Itrain. As the training-workshop is oriented towards the adoption of free and open source software, the training team will introduce non-proprietary tools and conduct the training in a laboratory where machines are at least dual boot.

Since the initiative uses the “train the trainers” framework, the participants must have the ability to echo the training to their own organizations, partners and networks. They are also expected to have a stake in the decision making process within their organizations, enabling them to have a greater opportunity in applying the knowledge and skills they acquired on an institutional level. The training-workshop can accommodate up to 25 participants, with at least 10 slots for CSO workers from the provinces, especially from the two southern islands of Visayas and Mindanao.

The training team for this project includes some of the participants and trainers in FMA's FOSS training for CSOs in October 2004 and its regular trainings for the Martus community in the Philippines and APC's Asian Workshop on Secure Computing and Online Communications in May 2005.

This site was initiated thanks to grants received by the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) from CIDA, OSISA and Article 19 to support civil society involvement in ICT policy processes. FMA is a member of the APC. This policy portal is one of series being developed around the world.

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