Dr. Sakena Yacoobi is the founder and Executive Director of the Afghan Institute of Learning, the Professor Sakena Yacoobi Private Hospital in Herat, and the Professor Sakena Yacoobi Private High Schools in Kabul and Herat, Afghanistan.
The Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) is an Afghan women-led NGO founded by Dr. Yacoobi in 1995. AIL was established to provide teacher training to Afghan women, to support the education of Afghans, and to provide health education to women and children. Under Sakena’s leadership AIL has established itself as a groundbreaking, visionary organization which works at the grassroots level and empowers women and communities to find ways to bring education and health services to those in need. AIL was the first to offer human rights and leadership training to Afghan women and was the first organization to open Learning Centers for Afghan women – a concept now copied by many organizations throughout Afghanistan. Since beginning in 1995, AIL has impacted the lives of over 10 million Afghans, at least 7 million of whom are women.
Bringing NGOs from many different fields together at a Summit allows for more in depth collaboration and discussion.
The first World NGO Day Summit was hosted by the Royal Over-Seas League and World NGO Day Initiative’s Secretariat, and held in Over-Seas House, London, UK.
Guests speakers included: H.E. Mr Pekka Huhtaniemi, Ambassador of Finland to the UK; Mr Vijay Krishnarayan, Director of the Commonwealth Foundation; Mr Steve Kenzie, Directorof the Secretariat of the UN Global Compact Network; and Mr Philip Mulligan, Executive Director of the United Nations Association.
Discussion was divided into two main panel topics - Understanding Cultures & Promoting Sustainable Development and Running Sustainable NGOs & Leveraging New Technologies.
“ We strongly support this important initiative establishing it as an official international calendar day. ”
World NGO Day is a new International calendar day, intended to be a symbol of bringing together the world’s NGOs to build a stronger future for all.
The international day would aim to raise awareness of the many organisations and the individuals behind them - working to benefits society around the globe, inspire people to become more actively involved in this sector and encourage more collaboration between NGOs. It would be a dedicated day for all NGOs to commemorate and celebrate their achievements, ensuring that small grassroots organisations gain the recognition they deserve.
For the purpose of this day, the term NGO will be used to encompass all Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), and other types of Non Governmental Organisation within the third sector.
The Initiative is focused on NGOs which support the UN and their international human right principles, and do not cultivate or promote illegal activities.
“The international day for NGOs could be an important mile stone for the UN Millennium Goals 2015, since the NGO sector is an important partner in order to achieve those goals - for a better civil society contribution, participation, and acknowledgement.”
Ms. Aicha Bah Diallo
NGO Liaisons Committee of UNESCO
“ I believe that NGOs are key vehicles to leverage the socio- economic development of countries and regions. ”
The Minister for International Development of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Finland supports the World NGO Day Initiative
“To mark the exceptional and highly valuable work that the NGOs are doing, I warmly support the initiative to establishing an international World NGO day. The calendar day can also serve as an opportunity to aim towards more capable and strong NGO sector and to ensuring that there is also an enabling working environment for these organizations in every part of the world.” November 9, 2012
World NGO Day Summit
"The Arab International Women’s Forum commends the International Advisory Group for this much-needed initiative to celebrate and commemorate the positive but often-forgotten work of NGOs, non-profit and civil society organisations.
The role of the NGO must, put simply, be depoliticised, and citizens should be encouraged to become actively involved with NGOs to build a more inclusive, democratic and sustainable civil society in the Arab world."
Mrs Haifa Fahoum Al Kaylani
Founder and Chairman
The Arab International Women’s Forum
“ An International NGO Day could also help to strengthen and leverage the use of technology at NGOs. ”
“A strong and vibrant civil society is an important element for a well-functioning democracy. NGOs as part of the civil society play a crucial role in democratizing governance, especially by empowering the disadvantaged and marginalize communities and people.”
Mahabub Hossain PhD, Executive Director, BRAC and BRAC International, BRAC Centre, Bangladesh
World NGO Day Summit
"Collaborating with NGOs is a potential ground for peace education and could lead to a generation of genuine peace-makers as recognised also by international organisations like the United Nations, UNESCO and the European Commission. There is wide consensus that NGOs help to educate globally responsible citizens, that - also thanks to the use of social media - carry out fundamental advocacy to build a better world for us and for future generations; provided they are working on key issues that really matter to the world."
H.E. Mr Pekka Huhtaniemi
Ambassador of Finland to the UK
"We strongly support this important initiative establishing it as an official international calendar day - World NGO Day."
World NGO Day Initiative has received an official acknowledgment letter from H.E. Dr. Fatima Mohammed Albalooshi, Minister of Social Development, the Kingdom of Bahrain.
“ An International NGO Day is important as it gives space to NGOs locally, regionally and internationally to share good practice approaches. ”
World NGO Day Summit
"It is right that we take time to acknowledge this sector globally and to give thanks to the multitude of citizens who have helped to build this movement. One of these dear colleagues was a woman called Angela Cropper. A fellow Trinidadian, Angela was an NGO stalwart and helped to elaborate the concept of sustainable development. She went on to become the Deputy Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme. Sadly she passed away on Monday but she once referred to colleagues in NGOs as the “make happeners.” I have never heard it put better. This is a moment to give thanks for her and them, and I thank you for taking this initiative."
Mr Vijay Krishnarayan
Director, Commonwealth Foundation
“ The World NGO Day is an opportunity for NGOs to showcase their activities to all development stakeholders. ”
Why is it crucial to acknowledge the World NGO Day worldwide? The establishment of an official date for World NGO Day would be:
✔ An opportunity for education, enabling individuals worldwide to understand more clearly what NGOs are doing for society locally, nationally and internationally.
✔ An opportunity for individuals to learn more about the people behind NGOs.
✔ An international symbol that displays the efforts and achievements of all NGOs from all sectors.
✔ An opportunity to inspire people to consider a career within the third sector.
✔ A platform for NGOs around the globe to share knowledge and experiences with one another.
✔ An opportunity for NGOs to discuss the issues that affect their work and form partnerships to work to resolve these.
Ms. Nancy Gofus is the Chief Operating Officer of the Public Interest Registry.
Currently, Ms. Gofus serves as board chair of the national board for Volunteers of America – a national non-profit dedicated to helping those in need live healthy, safe and productive lives.
"World NGO Day offers the possibility to present all NGOs together as a whole and not as single NGOs, to highlight the intent to build capacities and reach effectiveness and transparency in NGO initiatives."
Mr Ben Jackson
Chief Executive of BOND
“ We strongly believes that the contribution NGOs make to the society must be well-recognized by the national governments and UN agencies. ”
Ms Sharmila Karki (Nepal)
President of the NGO Federation of Nepal
Sharmila Karki is currently the president of NGO Federation of Nepal, which is an umbrella organization of about 5500 NGOs working in different thematic sectors in Nepal. She is the first ever woman President in 20 years of history of NGO Federation of Nepal. At NGO Federation of Nepal, she represents Jagaran Nepal, an NGO established for human rights, peace and good governance especially for women and marginalized community.
Ms. Karki is a well known senior civil society leader in Nepal. She is actively involved in defending human rights, especially establishment of women's rights, for two decades. Working with various national level organizations Ms. Karki has collected extensive experience in this sector.
"The increased international dimension in all global level of processes demands us to operate in a challenging world, with cultural diversities. I believe that NGOs work will be the crucial asset and a driving force in the future of our ever globalized world."
Mrs. Leena Zittling, Board Member of International Network for Small and Medium Sized Entreprises Association
Dr Hezron Mc’Obewa BMedSci(Hons) MBBS MRCGP is the Executive Director of The NGOs Coordination Board in Kenya. (The NGOs Coordination Board is mandated by the Government of Kenya to register, coordinate and facilitate the work of ALL national and International NGOs operating in Kenya.http://www.worldngoday.com/about/international/69/
" ... This day is an opportunity for individuals worldwide to know more about effective NGOs and to understand more clearly what NGOs are doing for society locally, nationally and internationally. An international symbol that displays the values, efforts and achievements of all NGOs from all sectors - as long as they support UN and other international human rights principles, and do not cultivate or promote illegal activities ..."
Mr. Marcis Liors Skadmanis
Initiator of World NGO Day Initiative
Mr. Suon Bunsak is the Executive Secretary/Chief of Secretariat of Cambodian Human Rights Action Committee - CHRAC, a position he has held since the midst of 2006. He is mainly responsible for reporting to CHRAC steering committee and overseeing the daily management of CHRAC’s works and Secretariat staff members.
CHRAC is a human rights coalition of 21 member organizations in Phnom Penh and a several provincial branches which is called Provincial Action Committees.
Mr. Bunsak oversees of CHRAC’s programs, which includes building relationships with other NGOs, donors and stakeholders. He has obtained a Bachelor degree of law and then Master of public administration from Universities in Phnom Penh. Since his initial work experience in 1992 with UN Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC) as an UN Electoral Officer and Interpreter/Translator, he has gained more than ten years of work experience in the field of human rights, democracy and rule of law.
Mrs Rasma Pipike, Board Director of the World NGO Day Initiative's Secretariat and an avid supporter of the International Day met with Mr Chuck Hitchcock, Chair of the UN NGO/DPI Executive Committee at NYC. The NGO/DPI is supportive of the initiative and the meeting was a fruitful one.http://worldngoday.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/mrs-rasma-pipike-and-mr-chuck-hitchcock.html
Dr. William F. Shija, Secretary-General, Commonwealth Parliamentary Association.
Former Member, National Assembly of Tanzania, 1990-2005; Minister: of Industry & Trade, 1997 -1998; of Energy & Minerals, 1994-1995; of Information & Broadcasting, 1992-1994; of Science, Technology & Higher Education, 1990 -1992; Regional Commissioner for Mwanza, 1994-1995; Principal Lecturer Nyegezi Social Development College, 1988 -1990; Lecturer Nyegezi Social Development College, 1978 -1982; Tutor – Civil Service College, 1972; Senior Instructor- Tabora Secretarial College, 1972-76.
He also served as Chairman, Foreign Affairs Committee, Tanzania National Assembly(1999-2005); Member and Chairman, Committee on Education, Culture, Tourism and Human Resources, African Union's Pan African Parliament (2004-2005). He has authored numerous academic, government and parliamentary policy papers in political economy, education, communications and development issues.
Mr. Filippo Addarii is the Executive Director of Euclid Network | the European network of civil society professionals.
Filippo Addarii’s work bridges disciplines and industries and takes him to almost every continent. His long-standing aims are to develop a global network of engaged citizens from diverse national, ethnical, religious and professional backgrounds to share knowledge and experiment to find solutions for the greater good of humanity and the planet.
Since 2007, Filippo has run Euclid Network. He has initiated cutting edge advocacy projects, such as the review of the European funding rules for grants which affect hundreds of thousands of civil society organisations (CSOs) around the world, to realise the potential of a Europe led by engaged citizens. Representing pioneers from the beginning, Filippo today advises the European Commission on social innovation, social enterprise and social investments policies with a particular focus on how to engage citizens and CSOs.
Founder/Executive Director of "The NGO World"
During devastating floods Pakistan 2010, The NGO World also started humanitarian operations and managing development projects under the title The NGO World Foundation (briefly called TNW Foundation).
Now TNW joins hands with Government Functionaries, Line Departments, INGOs, UN Agencies & other key Aid agencies besides drawing its strength from communities’ active involvement in need driven development process through a participatory development initiative & community based interventions etc. Within the limits of available resources TNW also respond to human sufferings in emergency and disastrous situations anywhere all over the Pakistan regardless race, gender, ethnicity, class, location, religion, color, cultural diversity and social background; with special focus in the areas where massive population living below the poverty line”. During last couple of years it beneficiaries range has exceeded the figure of 400,00
Major General Roddy Porter is the Director-General of the Royal Over-Seas League.
Maj Gen Roddy Porter delivered a erudite geo-political overview drawing from his extensive military experience in many of the world’s pivotal conflicts and reconciliation processes. He elaborated on how his current Royal Overseas League role extends his involvement in constructive multilateral activity that has a positive influence on international relations.
Guntis Ulmanis (born on September 13, 1939) was the fifth President of Latvia from 1993 to 1999.
Guntis Ulmanis' term finished in 1999 and he was succeeded by Vaira Vike-Freiberga. He retired from politics but became a social activist, founding the Guntis Ulmanis Fund, organizing the 2006 IIHF World Championship in Riga and heading the Riga Castle reconstruction council.
Ms. Heather Mansfield is the owner of DIOSA Communications, principal blogger at Nonprofit Tech 2.0, and author of Social Media for Social Good: A How-To Guide for Nonprofits
She also created and maintains the “Nonprofit Organizations” profiles on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, Flickr, and LinkedIn which cumulatively have more than 750,000 friends, followers, and fans. A pioneer in utilizing social media for the nonprofit sector, Heather has fifteen years of experience utilizing the Internet for fundraising, community building, and advocacy.
Mr Hayford Siaw (Ghana) Editor-in-Chief of NGO News Africa
Hayford Siaw is a successful Ghanaian Social Entrepreneur leading variety of projects being implemented within the African sub-region in collaboration with several donor and philanthropic partners.
He has vast experience in Project Design and Management in emerging markets. In 2009, Mr Siaw launched NGO News Africa, an online news portal that seeks to recognize the critical role of the NGO/NPO Civil Society Actors and to offer them a space to publish news on their work.
Besides offering space for NGOs, NGO News Africa helps direct donor funding in critical areas. Hayford serves on the Board of several NGO/NPOs in Africa and is in full support of the World NGOs Day celebration.
Mr Hayford Siaw is the Executive Director- VPWA (www.vpwa.org)- United Nations Volunteers Award winner- 2010 & 2011
Editor-in-Chief - NGO News Africa (www.ngonewsafrica.org)
Change Leader - Reach For Change (www.reachforchange.org)
Sung-Joo Kim is the Chairwoman and CEO of Sungjoo Group and MCM Holdings AG.
She was ranked among the "Top 50 Women to Watch" by the Wall Street Journal in (2004) and Selected as one of the "New Century Leaders" in CNN for the Best of Asia in (2003). She is known for being actively involved in promoting women's leadership, supporting humanitarian causes worldwide and for her outspoken stance against corruption.
Ms Khady Koita (Senegal)
Co-founder and President of La Palabre and award-winning activist
Khady Koita is an award-winning activist who has been campaigning to end female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage for over 20 years, following her childhood experiences of these practices in Senegal.
In 1986, she joined the Groupe pour l'Abolition des Mutilations Sexuelles (Group for the Abolition of Sexual Mutilation - GAMS), which campaigns against FGM in France. She co-founded EuroNet FGM, a network of organisations that combats FGM, and she also founded the Senegalese- Belgian organisation La Palabre, which fights FGM, forced marriage and ‘honour’ violence through education and training. Her memoir Blood Stains has been translated into 18 languages.
During his career, he has held a number of honorary positions including current Secretary General of SAARCLAW (South Asian Association for Regional Co-operation in Law). He has also served as Vice President of the organisation and as Secretary General during 2002-2007.http://www.worldngoday.com/about/international/53/