The goal was to create a space to connect individuals and organizations working in the developing world in order to build new or strengthen existing relationships, and to inform U.S. foreign assistance and diplomatic strategies on major themes and ideas that emerge during the event. It employs a “bottom up” approach to shaping both future and existing initiatives within the USAID and other U.S. Government Agencies that allows the people who are on the ground dealing with the limitations of current initiatives and thriving in the wake of successful ones to contribute their ideas, best practices and concerns.
You might be thinking that this is a nice gesture and must be yielding some compelling discussions (it is!), but what happens when it’s over? Will any of this actually have an effect on the discussions that will take place within these initiatives after Global Pulse 2010 by the people that are shaping policy and programs? Yes.
As I mentioned in Part One of this series, I can’t disclose the participants in discussions that take place in Global Pulse 2010. I can’t mention who they work for or with and I can’t reproduce anything they’ve written. I can’t share ideas being talked about there unless I am the author of them.
What I can tell you about is my personal experience there. It has been both my delight and experience that the participants who are members of various government agencies involved in Global Pulse and the developing world in general have done an impressive job of engaging the people who are intelligently talking about problems, solutions and best practices.
Without saying what initiative it’s a part of, I can tell you that someone from one of our government departments responded to a thread I started and I’m now part of a collaborative group created by the USG to realize a solution to the problem I lamented. I can’t post their comments in between, but here is my original post and my replies to the comments. It should give you a good idea of what’s happening within Global Pulse.
You can hear what other tweeps who are participants are saying by following #GP2010 and on twitter and can get real time updates by following me there:
Hi to xxxxxx, xxxxxxxxxx and my fellow participants in this forum!
I’m the Founder of Big Love Little Hearts, a U.S. based organization that helps children with heart defects in developing countries get the lifesaving surgery they need.
We help children all over the world and function almost entirely though partnerships, collaboration and networking so this topic is of great interest to me.
Primarily we work by playing case worker and matching these children up with other NPO’s/NGO’s who already have a pre-existing mission team of pediatric heart surgeons traveling near them. When we can’t find them we find hospitals that are equipped and staffed appropriately and work with them to fund these surgeries. Transportation to and from, housing, aftercare and government regulations are just a sampling of the ancillary processes involved in getting surgery.
All of this takes help from a plethora of organizations and we do our best to locate any humanitarian or government group doing any kind of work anywhere near any of our kids. Despite the years I’ve been doing this I find out about new groups everyday and through various sources: google, twitter, facebook, word of mouth, etc.
There has to be a more streamlined source for this information. Is the U.S. Government working on any kind of database that tracks all of the various groups and agencies doing work in developng countries that NPO’s and NGO’s can have access to?
We have built amazing partnerships but it has taken a tremendous amount of time. I can’t imagine how much more efficiently we could all do our jobs if we were just aware of EVERYONE there was to consider building a partnership with.
Thank you for the opportunity to share!
Thank you so much for your response, xxx. That is very encouraging news and I certainly recognize the many challenges that have stood in the way of something like this coming into fruition before. Indeed those challenges are exactly what I come up against when trying to access this data for my own organization’s use.
I truly appreciate the USG effort to lead the discussion I know will yield a solution that, as you say, we’ll all wonder what we ever did with out. Expediency in connecting need to resources will have a profound effect on the work all of us here do, no matter what our particular cause interest may be.
Once again, I truly appreciate and applaud the approach the USG is taking to this as you outlined it above. You mentioned a variety of participants involved in the conversation. If there is a way for me to continue to be involved outside of this forum, please let me know. You can contact me directly at email@example.com
Got the invitation – thanks! Impressed by what I saw and look forward to contributing and learning.