Strengthening the Capacity of Philippine Civil Society Organisations

Strengthening the Capacity of Philippine Civil Society Organisations

In 2011-2014, the Caucus of Development NGO Networks (CODE-NGO) became part of a 3-year capacity building initiative called “Strengthening the Capacity of Philippine CSOs Project”. The project involved the development of a self-assessment tool called the CAT (Capacity Assessment Tool) so that a CSO can evaluate or rate itself in terms of its organizational development or maturity in the areas of Governance and Leadership, Financial Management, Administrative and Personnel Management, Project Development and Management and Resource Mobilization. While the tool reflects compliance with Philippine laws and context, some indicators may also apply to CSOs in other countries. The CAT becomes a basis for CSOs to identify areas of organizational weakness and strength, so they can craft their capacity building plan.

Towards these ends, participating delegates in the first National Congress forged what is now known as the Covenant on Philippine Development. To this day, this historic document remains the fundamental basis for the broad unity established among the member networks and organizations of CODE-NGO.

Learning from this project, CODE-NGO developed two more CATs – in the areas of Networking and Member Relations and of Advocacy Effectiveness. These two areas are more relevant to networks like CODE-NGO and its direct members.

You can check out the project and complete the self-assessment here.

The Capacity Assessment Tool (CAT) was developed for four reasons:

  • To allow CSOs in the Philippines to assess their organizations against specific capacity building areas, defined standards and metrics;
  • To identify organizational development gaps;
  • To establish the basis for developing organization-specific capacity building plans; and,
  • To lay the ground for monitoring and evaluating the development of organizations against the stages of organizational development over time.

Does your organisation have a civil society accountability or transparency practice that you would like to showcase here? Please let us know in the form below – any language is welcome! If you have any questions, please let us know at

Contact Person


Review the network capacity assessment tool here

Another tool on assessing network advocacy capacities here


Roselle Rasay, Caucus of Development NGO Networks (CODE-NGO)

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