Developing a future story in Liberia

I recently ran a workshop session for two INGOs to help them in developing a future story in Liberia. They were looking to launch a new report as the catalyst for a new piece of advocacy around food security and nutrition.

What was immediately striking for me was that they had no problem at all in articulating their advocacy message around a problem and a solution. Very often when I am working with groups, it can take time to develop a succinct advocacy message. There was no such problem here in Liberia.

We then quickly moved onto developing their theory of change or future story. Again what was immediately noticeable was the rich array of ideas that they had for their advocacy strategy. We soon rustled up all of the possible angles and partners for them to be able to build momentum on their advocacy goal.

After our meeting , I produced a short paper for them setting out their advocacy message and the possible components of their future story for their advocacy. It was energising to see both the clarity of their message but also the richness of ideas for their advocacy campaign.

Yet it was also self-evident that they would not be able to do all of their expressed ideas, or at the very least they would not be able to do all of them simultaneously. Having had this initial discussion, we are now working on their future story in Liberia. We are taking all of their ideas, and in the context of the reality of their own external environment, we are now beginning to map out the logic for a sequence of activities to build momentum for their advocacy. This is how a future story can really drive an advocacy campaign forward!

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