I wasn't expecting to get much done today because it is a national holiday leading into an extended weekend. But after seeing the office for Concern Worldwide's Laos office just down the street from my hotel I decided to stop in to take a look. Turns out that the staff were all in office today, including the regional director from the main offices in Ireland.
I only briefly introduced myself and gave a quick rundown of OACF's plan to organize a regional NGO film festival later this year. As Concern Worldwide has offices in Cambodia and Laos we'll be looking to see if we can find some way to work together to inform communities throughout the region about their work.
Concern Worldwide is a non-governmental, international, humanitarian organisation dedicated to the reduction of suffering and working towards the ultimate elimination of extreme poverty in the world's poorest countries. We are a non-religious organisation; we respect the beliefs of all people in Lao PDR. Concern Worldwide has its headquarters in Dublin, Ireland.
Concern Worldwide has been working in Lao PDR since 1992 providing development assistance to the Government in a number of provinces.
Concern Lao's vision is of a country in which the basic needs of the people are met and in which everybody has access to the resources and opportunities necessary to lead healthy, fulfilling and peaceful lives.
Concern Lao's mission is to improve the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable and ensure that their basic needs are fulfilled in a sustainable manner. This will be achieved by enhancing communities and individuals access to and control over resources; by strengthening the capacity of government and civil society to meet the aspirations of the people, and by promoting pro-poor policy making and participatory processes.
Concern Worldwide is guided by these core values:
- Development is a long term process
- Greater participation leads to greater commitment.
- Environment must be respected.
- Equality is a prerequisite for development.
- Governments have primary responsibility for poverty alleviation.