Building on the success of the 2014 meetings, and to follow-up with participants from the 2014 Capacity Building project, EFA returned to Italy on the 5th of December 2015 to meet representatives of FederASMA e ALLERGIE Onlus (FAeA). The aim of the meeting was to verify the progresses achieved after last year’s training and to explore opportunities for further improvement. The meeting was attended by 17 participants representing 11 FederASMA e ALLERGIE member organizations active at the local level in Italy.

FAeA representatives described the impact of the first EFA Capacity Building session on their activities. The training sessions resulted in increased contacts with potential partners and collaborations with public institutions and scientific organizations. For example, FAeA is represented in the Board of GARD Italy (Global Alliance against Chronic Respiratory Diseases), where they are currently working on three main topics: Environment and respiratory diseases; Tobacco; Education and healthcare. FAeA is also collaborating with national scientific organizations AIPO and AAITO on a project aimed at monitoring asthma mortality.

After a positive year FAeA is now discussing an internal reform, with the aim of strengthening its role as a focal point for asthma and allergy patients in Italy. With this in view, EFA provided the participants with information on the key points that a patient organization should take into account when facing periods of transition, starting with the definition of a strategic approach that should focus first of all on increasing the organization’s capacity, and then on the optimization of the organisation’s structure. The discussion that followed also addressed the issue of expanding funding sources and how to build and maintain relationship with current and potential funding partners.

In the second part of the meeting, participants engaged in project work aimed at developing a workplan. This objective of this is to enable them to better understand how to organize, monitor and capitalize on all planned activities. After a brief presentation on how to structure the workplan and the terminology to use (Objectives, actions, deliverables, milestones), participants were able to define concrete activities and expected results towards the realization of one of FAeA’s main global objectives, guaranteeing equal access to care to asthma and allergy patients in Italy. Lastly, EFA’s Project Manager provided the participants with practical advice on how to apply for, and participate in, EU-funded projects, including information on useful contacts and tools available at the national level that can ease involvement in EU projects.

EFA Photo Capacity Building 2015 Italy

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