WHO WE ARE
Civic Response is a leading Natural Resource and Environmental (NRE) governance policy advocacy organisation working to entrench resource rights. Founded in 2003 in Accra, Ghana by a group of activists with experience in resource rights campaigns both locally and globally, Civic Response undertakes activities which address the policy needs of communities who depend directly on natural resources, particularly forests.
Civic Response seeks to change social arrangements that entrench marginalisation, exclusion and division as well as provide advocacy and networking support to self-organised citizens’ groups in the natural resource and environment sector.
We envision a just, productive, pluralistic and tolerant society collectively in control of its resources and systematically improving development opportunities for all citizens and communities.
Civic Response is a product of the thoughts of the founding members on how to enhance civic and citizens right for improved governance and accountability throughout the country for development and for resource rights to improve livelihoods of individuals, communities and national development.
‘Student Parliament Project’ was one of the first projects Civic Response embarked on in 2003 to improve the understanding and capacity of student movements in governance. Following a workshop convened by CARE Ghana in Kumasi in the same year, seeking to mobilise NGOs in the forest sector for advocacy for forest governance advocacy from community to national level, the need arose to provide a secretariat for this forest sector advocacy group (now known as Forest Watch Ghana; FWG).
Civic Response was unanimously agreed on by the participants in that meeting to host the FWG secretariat. This caused Civic Response to shift into the natural resources sector and remained as such with focus on natural resource governance and using same to achieve citizens’ right and responsibilities in the natural resource sector. It became logical to remain in the natural resources sector as it employs lots of Ghanaians in both the informal and formal sector as well as increasing international focus and demand for legal timber. Legal timber cannot be achieved through just enforcement of forest sector laws but also citizens’ mobilisation to demand respect for their rights and holding stakeholders accountable at local and national levels accountable because forest management is not only a technical issue but social arrangements as well.