Workshop: More than 40 civil society leaders and mid-level officials attended a three-day leadership workshop organised by Bhutan Centre for Media and Democracy (BCMD).

The workshop focused on various leadership styles, building organisation with sustainable and long-term impact, building partnerships with different sectors and managing transitions, among others.

BCMD’s executive director Siok Sian Pek Dorji said civil society in Bhutan is relatively young and new. “At this juncture, we feel that the civil society need a clear vision about the future – how do we grow as an organisation and how do we lead.”

She added: “We feel ready that now we can think more about how we can partner and collaborate not only across the civil societies, but also articulate what it is we are doing, so that people in the government and corporate sector can understand what we hope to achieve.”

Chairman of Civil Society Organisation Authority, Sonam Dorji, said the workshop was an opportunity for the civil societies to come together to collaborate and to network.

“What I foresee is also series of such gatherings later and see how we can support each other rather than duplicating and maximising the resources be it human or financial resources. There is a huge room for collaboration,” said Sonam Dorji. “The presence of CSOs in Bhutan is not new but is new as a formal sector…when we collaborate at a nascent stage we can have proper direction and pave our way for the future.”

Siok Sian Pek Dorji said that vibrancy of the civil society also reflects the vibrancy of democracy. “The workshop triggered a lot of reflections and reviewing of what are the civil societies doing and what are their visions, and how do they align to all the social challenges and opportunities that we have.”

The three-day workshop ended yesterday.

Thinley Zangmo