This guide was developed by the Raising Pacific Voices (RPV) programme, a civil society strengthening programme. Funded by the European Union, Oxfam in the Pacific worked in partnership with the Pacific Disability Forum (as the focal point for the Pacific Regional NGO Alliance) to develop the RPV in order to strengthen the capacity of civil society groups across the Pacific region. The RPV programme is a Pacific-designed and Pacific-led initiative. It works on the premise that to strengthen the capacity of civil society groups across the Pacific, we must amplify the diverse voices of Pacific peoples, particularly poor and marginalised groups.

The development of this guide was established in the idea that for people to fully realise their political agency, they must be protected from the power inequalities that act as the drivers of poverty – essentially, they must be safeguarded. The RPV programme has a strong focus on:

  • self-determination as an ongoing process in the Pacific. Raising Pacific Voices supports that vision through the institutional strengthening of civil society partners and the wider Pacific civil society community;
  • taking local ownership of development issues. This starts by recognising and understanding the institutional capacity gaps that exist in national and regional civil society groups;
  • providing a safe space for regional civil societies and non-state actors (NSA) to highlight concerns and share lessons learned, as well as encouraging and engaging civil society in courageous conversations about national and regional governance

In the spirit of Raising Pacific Voices, the development of this tool has been informed and based on our work with our partner CSOs in Fiji and across the region. This version will be distributed widely for CSOs and NSAs to further test and provide feedback. Oxfam in the Pacific welcomes your review of the technical content, the usability, and the accuracy of the rankings.