Pakse, Lao PDR — In an effort to strengthen the capacity of local communities, mass organizations and people's organizations to develop community-based projects in Sedone, a two-day writeshop was convened and participated in by over 42 participants from the three riparian provinces in Sedone from 30 September to 1 October 2010.
The writeshop was conducted to provide information on eligible projects and criteria for GEF/UNDP Small Grants Programme (SGP) funding, as well as review and improve the concept notes submitted by the provinces in the previous Call for Concept Notes made by the GEF/UNDP Small Grants Programme.The writeshop is part of the regional implementation of the Joint Communiqué of the GEF Small Grants Programme, one of PEMSEA's Non-Country Partners, and PEMSEA. It was organized by the GEF/UNDP Small Grants Programme in Lao PDR, the PEMSEA Resource Facility, the Project Coordinating Office of the Sedone Integrated Riverbasin Management Project (SIRBMP) and the Department of Water Resources of Lao PDR."It is a good opportunity for us to learn how we can develop or improve our project proposals as well as discuss other community-based projects under the Sedone Strategy which can be funded by the SGP," expressed Mr. Sengsoulivanh Inthachack of the Project Coordinating Office. During the writeshop, group discussions were facilitated to further refine the concept notes initially submitted by the provinces. The concept notes deal with land degradation, climate change abatement, and riverbank rehabilitation and protection.Information was also provided on community-based activities being done in other countries to give the participants some idea on potential project activities.The GEF/UNDP Small Grants Programme was approved by the Government of Lao PDR in September 2008 and was formally launched in September 2009. Since then, it has awarded grants for 17 community-based organizations focusing on priority issues.