Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Commonwealth Professional Fellowship Quality Management Training




FFF Cameroon Training Evaluation Report

Award Holder: James Achanyi-Fontem
Address: Cameroon Link, P.O, Box 1460 Douala, Littoral Province, Cameroon
Telephone: (237) 77758840 Fax: (237) 33391356
Email: camlink99@gmail.com or jafontem@yahoo.com
COURSE CONTENT COVERED
INDUCTION ON OVERALL AIM OF COURSE
The Director of the Sickle Cell Society, Dr. Asa’ah Nkohkwo, organized the induction which consisted of what the society is all about and is doing. He explained in details the content of the training programme which was basically, on the transfer through on-the-job “Best Practice” exposure to Fine Forest Foundation – Cameroon managers, the ropes of value-for-money sustainability and responsive community-led NGO management skills.
LEARNING OBJECTIVES
These covered value for money system accountability appraisal in relation to:
 CORPORATE PLANNING: CP>IP>FRS>DELIVERY
 OBJECTIVES SETTING & ACTION TRANSLATION
 METROLOGY REPORTING & PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY
 STAKEHOLDER IMPACT ASSESSMENT
 MARKETING, PR & STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS
SPECIFIC AREAS COVERED
 EXPOSURE TO A TYPICAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEM SET-UP USING THE SICKLE CELL SOCIETY AS AN EXAMPLE
 BUSINESS PLANNING & PROJECT MANAGEMENT
 BUDGETING FOR GROWTH
 DIRECT / INDIRECT INCOME GENERATION TO DELIVER OBJECTIVE
 BOOK KEEPING (TRACEABLE INCOME DEPLOYMENT)
 KNOWLEDGE ACQUISITION SYSTEM (ICT, WEBSITE, FILING ETC)
 QUALITY ASSURANCE & CONTROL
 STAKEHOLDER SATISFACTION
 FUNDRAISING & MICRO-FINANCE
 EVENTS MANAGEMENT BY BTP
 HEALTH PROMOTION

DELIVERY METHODS

 INDUCTION & MODULE LECTURES
 LEARNING SET & TUTORIAL WITH PRACTICE
 MODELS APPRAISAL: SICKLE CELL SOCIETY- PQASSO = practical quality assurance for small (& medium)- sized organizations)
 LEARNING VISITS TO COMPANIES, ORGANISATIONS & COLLEGES
 OUTREACH PLACEMENTS
 SELF DIRECTED ENQUIRY AND JOINING IN
 PLACEMENTS: OCTOBER & NOVEMBER 2008
 MONITORING, EVALUATIONS & REPORTS : 1-12 DECEMBER

DELIVERY PARTNERS

 SICKLE CELL SOCIETY
 BRITISH COUNCIL – (COMMONWEALTH COMMISSION)
 NSTECHNOMED LTD
 TMG FOUNDATION
 OUTREACH MANAGEMENT SERVICES LTD

TUTORS
Dr. ASA’AH NKOHKWO, PROJECT LEAD
Dr. JANE WAI-OGOSU, SICKLE CELL SOCIETY & LFGSCA
MIRIAM WILLIAMS, SICKLE CELL SOCIETY
KALPNA PATEL, SICKLE CELL SOCIETY
IYAMIDE THOMAS, SICKLE CELL SOCIETY & LFGSCA
COMFORT NDIVE, SICKLE CELL SOCIETY & LFGSCA
EDMOND ASONGANYI, FINE FOREST FOUNDATION
Dr. STELLA NANA-FABU, FINE FOREST FOUNDATION
Dr. ROSEMARY BURNLEY, TMG FOUNDATION
Prof. SAMA NWANA, NSTECHNOMED & TMG FOUNDATION
Mrs. ELIZABETH EMMANUEL, NSTECHNOMED
JULIUS NKENGANYI, NSTECHNOMED
YVONNE NDIFOR, NSTECHNOMED
JOHN MENSAH, OUTREACH MANAGEMENT SERVICES Ltd
LFGSCA= London Focus Group on Sickle Cell in Africa

BUSINESS PLANNING & PROJECT MANAGEMENT
John Mensah of Outreach Management Services addressed the issues of business planning, project design and management in theory and practice. The following were treated step by step:
 Fundraising and resource mobilisation
 Diversity and Equal Opportunities
 Presentation & Communication Skills
 Networking
 Management Development
 Business Plan
 Project Management Advocacy and Campaigns
 Public Relations
 Roles and Responsibilities of boards and trustees
Outreach Management Services specializes in providing solutions to charities, community and voluntary groups by equipping them with relevant skills. It assists groups of all sizes to maximize their potential through cost effective training and capacity building. Outreach delivery was highly participative and enabled the trainees to achieve insight and clarity.

BUDGETING FOR GROWTH AND BOOK KEEPING WITH TRACEABLE INCOME DEPLOYMENT
Ms Yvonne Ndifor, Assistant Company Secretary, NSTechnoMed UK lectured on budgeting for growth and book keeping with traceable income deployment. The content delivered included the following objectives:
 Examine and analyze the basic concept and principles of budgeting.
 Examine and analyze the basic concept and principles of bookkeeping in particular regards to traceable income deployment.
 At the end of the training, participants should be able to prepare and set up a budget and carry out basic bookkeeping within an organisation.
Explaining what budgeting for growth is all about, Ms. Ngechop Yvonne Claire NDI described the nature of a budget under:
 What is a budget?
 The importance of budgeting within an organization
 Different types of budgets
 The distinction between a budget and a cash flow
 Steps involve in preparing a budget
 A practical example involving the preparation of a budget
On BOOK KEEPING, the award holders were taught the basic, main areas of book keeping within an organization, Key rules, guidelines and basic principles of book keeping for traceable audit.
Practical training on book keeping principles with particular emphasis to small and medium size organisations and charitable organization was offered.

FUNDRAISING & MICRO-FINANCE
Public health and food security-The impact of Micro-finance on Households’ Food Security in rural communities of West Cameroon
Edmond Asonganyi of Fine Forest Foundation-UK specialized in development issues guided the fellows from Cameroon on how micro-finance could be deployed for poverty alleviation through the promotion of house-hold food security in rural communities.
In his lecture , he examined rural poor households Micro-finance activities and explored the strength and the limitations of micro-finance as a means to reduce households’ Food insecurity
Edmond Asonganyi described Micro-finance as a financial service targeting and catering for clients who are excluded from the conventional financial system on account of their lower economic status. Microfinance can include Micro credit, Micro-savings, Micro-insurance and payment (www.Micro-financealliance, 2007)On food security, he said, it is access by all people at all times to the food needed for a healthy life (Braun, et al. 1992)
He emphasized on the fact that Food Security has been an international development issue since the 1960s (Gala, 2002).
This is justified by the fact that about 820 million people suffer from food insecurity worldwide and the first millennium goal is to half the proportion of people suffering from hunger by 2015.
Malnutrition is seen as the leading cause of death in developing countries, while Poverty is the underlying cause of malnutrition (Young, et al. 2001). In the developing countries, the poor do not have collaterals to borrow money from traditional bankers to enhance their well being

ROLE OF INFORMATION, COMMUNICATION MANAGEMENT & TECHNOLOGY IN NGO MANAGEMENT

It was within the context of the above title that MICROSOFT application programs were taught to the Commonwealth fellows from Cameroon by Julius Nkenganyi, NSTechnoMed Marketing Service
Apart from learning about Microsoft Applications, the trainees were drilled on general basic computer functions, parts and usage. Emphasis was laid on electrostatic discharge, electricity and general health and safety when using a computer.

Microsoft Word
Being one of the most commonly used, Microsoft Soft application, Microsoft Word was taught to the trainees who learnt the basics of word processing within the environment of Microsoft Word. This will help us to be self reliant in their daily operations in terms creating and editing word document. Otherwise we might have to hire somebody to do it for us. Our being knowledgeable will save money.
Topics learnt included the following, though not limited to:
Introduction into Microsoft Word
Starting and working with Microsoft Word
viewing the toolbars
creating A New word Document
Formatting and Editing Text
Inserting a Table
Inserting a Picture
Inserting Page Numbers and Date/Time
Spell Checking Your Document

Microsoft Excel
With Microsoft Excel, as an award holders l learnt the basics of creating spreadsheets, recording and analyzing data for viewing and collaboration. I also learnt how to create customized formulas for data and analyze it with the easy to construct charts. Topics taught on excel include:
Introduction into Excel
Spreadsheet Basics
Creating Spread sheets
Modifying a Worksheet
Formatting Cells
Formulas and Functions
Sorting and Filing
Graphics
Charts
Page Properties and Printing

Microsoft Access
Sometimes a charity could be overwhelmed by the large quantities of data that need to be tracked in the organization. The Fine Forest Foundation Cameroon Management team is now not left behind in this capability age. Therefore, it becomes imperative were taught Access; because Access provides FFF Cameroon with the software tools they need to organize data in a flexible and easy to retrieve manner within their organisation.
The Commonwealth trainees working as a team learnt basic Access, which touched on the following:
Introduction into Access
Creating and Inputting Data into a new database
Creating and entering records into a table
Editing databases
Queries
Reports

Microsoft Publisher
Publisher was used to teach how to easily create and customize materials such as newsletters, brochures, flyers and catalogs. The FFF Cameroon will save much money and time by using this soft ware to produce its newsletters. Topics taught included:
Introduction into Microsoft Publisher
Starting up Publisher
Creating Publications based on template
Create a Publication with a Wizard.
Creation of Brochures, Flyers, Catalogs and Newsletters

PowerPoint

The Application of powerpoint is used during presentations.

Internet
Set-up & use of email facility
basics of website design, registration & updating
e-marketing
e-dialogue interactivity: discussion forums
ICT Policy: safety & security & regulations

Commonwealth NGO Mentors Drilled on Quality Assurance & Control
The chance of Business Sustainability can ONLY ever be maximized through endeavoring to incubate and live Quality Assurance (QA) and Control.. This observation was made by Prof. Sama Nwana of TMG Foundation UK during a lecture for Fine Forest Foundation Cameroon NGO Mentorship on sustainable management.
Speaking on Quality Assurance, Prof. Sama Nwana, said this refers to planned and systematic production processes that provide confidence in a product’s suitability for its intended purpose. Quality Assurance is a set of activities intended to ensure that products satisfy customer requirements in a systematic, reliable fashion. He added, however, that QA cannot absolutely guarantee the production of quality products, but makes this more likely.
Prof. Sama Nwana went on to say, that two key principles characterise QA, which are “fit for purpose” and “right first time”. Fit for purpose simply means that the product should be suitable for the intended purpose, while right first time means, mistakes should be eliminated from the start. QA includes regulation of the quality of raw materials, assemblies, products and components, services related to production, and management, production and inspection processes.

FFF Cameroon Joins Commonwealth Fellows Network
Three managers from the Fine Forest Foundation, FFF, Cameroon on Monday, 17th November, 2008 joined their counterparts from other parts of the world in a welcome Forum Event organized by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission, CSC in London.. The three, who represented the FFF were Ursula Fontem, Anastasia Atabong and James Achanyi from Cameroon. The three were engaged in a Commonwealth Professional Fellowship training hosted by the Sickle Cell Society UK, aimed at capacitating them on how to operate a charity effectively for the empowerment of local communities in Cameroon.
At the welcome event for new award holders, Professor Trudy Harpham, Chair of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom announced that the organization’s fellowship programme will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2009.
It is important to recall that the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission is responsible for managing Britain’s contribution to the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan, CSFP. The CSFP is an international programme under which members governments offer scholarships and fellowships to citizens of other Commonwealth countries. The plan was established at the first conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers in Oxford, UK in 1959 and is reviewed by ministers during their triennial meetings.
It is the only scholarship scheme in the world to receive such high-level recognition and it has become one of the most prestigious international scholarship schemes The scholarships and fellowships are funded by host country governments, though the United Kingdom has been the leading contributor to the CSFP, followed by Canada
Awards have also been held at some stage in over twenty commonwealth countries, and recipients have come from virtually all Commonwealth countries. Presenting the key note speech during the welcome 2008 event, David Lammy, MP, Minister of State for Higher Education and intellectual Property invited the the new award holders to play an important role in the CSC community from the time they take up their awards.
Over 26.000 individuals have received awards since 1959 and have had exceptional records in rising to positions of prominence in their chosen professions. Most of them have gone on to become academics, writers, scientists and leaders of government, major NGO and the business world. Being part of the CSC community, gives fellows a unique opportunity to network with a diverse range of talented people around the Commonwealth.
The existing networks send out quarterly newsletters that provide information on then latest research developments, conference news and funding opportunities relevant to those around the Commonwealth. Issued tackled in the newsletter surround agriculture and rural development, education, environment, gender, governance, civil society and community development, science and technology, health, faith and civil society. It is within this frame work that David Lammy called on the 2008 fellows to share their news and research activities when they return to their different countries.
Meanwhile at the Sickle Cell Society, Dr. Asa’ah Nkohkwo and his team coached the FFF Cameroon managers on the value-for-money systems accountability appraisal through the on-the-job best practice exposure. The trainees received lectures on the ropes of responsive community-led NGO management. Issues treated at the Sickle Cell Society ranged from corporate planning, objective setting and action translation, metrology reporting and public accountability, stakeholders impact assessment, marketing, public relations and strategic planning..
To impact the Fine Forest Foundation trainees, the team of SCS consultants introduced them to specific areas of typical management system set-up, business planning and project management, budgeting for growth, resourcing by direct and indirect income generation book keeping, traceable income development, knowledge acquisition system like website and filing, quality assurance and control, stakeholder satisfaction, fundraising and micro-finance, events management and health promotion.
Contributions were made by John Mensah of Outreach Management Services, that is specialized in providing solutions to charities, community and voluntary groups. He equipped the FFF trustees with relevant skill for arriving at community project ownership.
Ms. Yvonne Ndifor , the Assistant Company Secretary of NSTechnoMed UK, guided the Cameroon managers on budgeting for growth and book keeping, while emphasizing on traceability of income deployed in a project.
The role of information, communication management and technology in NGO management was handled by Julius Nkenganyi, a specialist in social marketing. He taught Microsoft application programmes which are applicable to project management for good governance and accountability.
There is no doubt that if the FFF Cameroon manager deploy the knowledge gather during their stay in the United Kingdom, everybody will turn out as winner including the local community populations.
For more on this report, click on the following link: http://cameroonlink.blogspot.com/ or the YouTube at http://uk.youtube.com/camlink99&view=videos
Significance of training
1.. We gained knowledge based skills which are significant to enhancing organizational capacities of our staff and the earned knowledge will be transferred to other NGOs in Cameroon through the planning and execution of simulation workshops and seminars on issues treated during our course.
2. TOT Communication, management and teamwork skills treated by specialists in the field in theory and practice. Team building and networking was taught in relation to planning, execution, monitoring and evaluation. This is found to be critical for peer learning, especially as we shall be organizing training for leaders of other NGOs, CBOs and FBOs in Cameroon on what we acquired during our Commonwealth Professional Fellowship Course in the UK.
3. Information Technology skills acquired were tested practically, as we created info blog where bits of the pertinent information collected are placed on Google for sharing at http://cameroonlink.blogspot.com/ There is also a YouTube in operation as a result of the training at http://uk.youtube.com/camlink99&view=videos
The same skills on Information Technology for communication will be applied for improving our management capacities, sharing information and producing reports on our work for partners and donors.
4. We were taught management analytical skills in decision making and report writing. This is going to be vital for exchanging basic, accurate and timely information amongst all stakeholders involved in the promotion of FFF Cameroon activities.

Back In Cameroon
Immediate Objectives
 Develop a social mobilization for information and education of community leaders from NGO, CBO, FBO managers and government partner institutions on the outcome of our training/.
 Develop vital national networking and strategic management capacity building training to share experiences earned in UK with other NGO managers throughout Cameroon
 Organise advocacy campaigns on Sickle Cell Disorder awareness and support for sickle cell bearers. Regular Information, Education and Information planned activities will be undertaken.
Mid Term Objectives Expand greater awareness and prevention campaigns on Sickle Cell Disorder in Cameroon at the level of colleges. Pro-actively work with other health associations and NGOs to develop their managerial skills.
 Empowerment women on micro-credit development systems for the alleviation of poverty.
Objectives in the long term
*Ensure that the views of those affected by Sickle Cell Disorder are represented at national and international levels.
*Engage stakeholders meaningfully in order to address health inequalities and promote the improvement of the quality of treatment of the less advantaged populations.

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