Tamkeen Committees divide each cycle of the programme in their communities to three phases, the first of which is known as the “Community Engagement Phase”. During this phase, TCs and their partners in LACs, civil society organizations, and other local governance initiatives seek to allow all community members to take part in the process of governance, or in other words, participate in it.
TCs base the activities they conduct during this phase on principle of Participation in good governance, which is one of three principles that the Tamkeen programme encourages adoption of in all area and operation of governance. It is one of Tamkeen’s objectives that local communities participate widely in the process of decision making. You can read more about participation in the Brief Guides section on our website.
Why is participation important for governance? And why is it good?
Regular people can greatly enrich the process of governance through participation in it. While decision making remains the core specialization of governmental officials, the results obtained of these decisions could be made much better if people took part in making them, and there were not made by officials independently.
As dedicated and devoted to their jobs as governance officials could be, and as informed as they are on the issues of their communities, they cannot be aware of all the needs of all societal groups at all times. Therefore, if members of the community from all groups participate by offering their opinions, they help officials make the best decisions to suit the biggest amount of people.
For these reasons, the capability of officials and their readiness to involve the community, and their rejection of monopolizing decision making, are considered good. Systems of governance which commit to participation as one of their principles are also considered good.
What are the forms of participation that take place during the community engagement phase?
Tamkeen Committees and their partners in governance initiatives implement several activities during this phase, which aim to provide a space and opportunity for people to participate in the process of governance, and encourage them to take advantage of this opportunity. During the past 2 months, TCs held meetings attended by community members at large, or by special smaller social groups, such as women, or social or service workers. Attendees share suggestions and opinions on the process of governance in their city or town, and the role of government officials in Local Councils or TCs. Public meetings are advertised widely, through online means as well as in public spaces and on billboards accessible to the community.
Meetings are also used to allow people to choose the projects they would like to see implemented in their communities. Surveying is also used understand the needs of local populations regarding projects. TCs have been distributing surveys, and have recently shared results the obtained from them through public meetings, or by publishing them over the internet or on local billboards.