SAP-PK came into being in 1987, just one year since the lifting of martial law from Pakistan. In its eight years, military rule had prevented the growth and development of civil society organizations and the need to strengthen civil society was strongly being felt. Keeping this need in view a group of intellectuals and social activists laid the foundation of SAP-PK. The objective of this organization was to enable the poorest of Pakistan so that their voice could reach policy makers.
To attain this goal SAP-PK worked on different projects with the participation of international organizations which continues to this day. The results of these endeavors were sometimes according to expectations and sometimes not so. From the very outset SAP-PK had known that it could only achieve its objective after a long and trying struggle, a struggle that could not be successful without the cooperation of local organizations.
Applying itself to raising the capacity of small local civil society organizations, SAP-PK successfully and in a very short time raised a crop of effective individuals and organizations. In pursuance of this goal SAP-PK began its Resource Development Program in 1991 which continued for fourteen years. In this period it trained over five hundred organizations which are now working in the field.
LINKAGES AND NETWORKING
Besides local organizations, SAP-PK also has the support of regional and international organizations. It is moreover part of several National, South Asian and international networks:
- Pakistan & World Social Forum
- Pakistan-India People’s Forum for Peace and Democracy (PIPFPD)
- Joint Action Committee for Peoples Rights (JAC)
- Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP)
- Convention on Joint Electorate
- Pakistan Institute for Labor Education and Research (PILER)
- NGO Legislative Watch Group on Women Rights
- Pakistan NGO Forum (PNF)
- Pakistan Peace Coalition (PPC)
- Society for participatory research in Asia (PRIA)
- South Asia Peace Alliance (SAPA)
- South Asian Labor for Peace (SALFA)
- South Asian Small Arms Network (SASA)
- Women for Peace in South Asia (WIPSA)
- IUCN-The World Conservation Union
- NGO Working Group on the World Bank (NGOWG)
- International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA)
- Commonwealth Foundation
- International Forum On Capacity Building (IFCB)
- Micro-Finance Group (MFG)
- CIVICUS World Assembly
As member of South Asian civil society movement, is striving to empower marginalized sections of society and working to influence policies in favor of people.
SAP-PK derives its name from a regional network, i.e., South Asia Partnership. This is a volunteer network of participatory development-support organizations operating under the same name and for the same purposes in Canada and four South Asian countries, i.e., Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. It has some presence in India as well, through a collective form of three different organizations. All these organizations and Sri Lanka Center for Development Facilitation collectively form SAP-International.
South Asia Partnership – Pakistan’s vision is to create an engendered, critical society in South Asia based on the universal principles of human dignity, justice, democracy and peaceful coexistence.
The mission of South Asia Partnership – Pakistan is to create enabling environment for participatory governance and sustainable collective action for peace, human security and regional cooperation at South Asian level, through organization of the marginalized sections of society and development of their capacities.
Create enabling environment for democratic governance and effective citizens’ participation through informed and effective voice of the poor, especially workers and peasants.
Facilitate pro-people civil society initiatives at national, regional and global levels promoting collective actions for peace, justice, human security and livelihood.
Increase sensitivity and harmony among people; actions against structural violence in our society through peaceful means and movements.
Contribute to pro-people collaborations between and among international organizations on important international concerns.
SAP-PK’s initiatives are based on its development philosophy that people are at the center. This understanding helps SAP-PK design its programs around the basic and strategic needs and fundamental rights of the people, especially who are disadvantaged and unheard. Following thrusts are the basis of SAP-PK’s national and regional programs:
Poverty and Sustainable Livelihood;
Human Security and Safe Environment;
Peace and Regional Cooperation;
Gender and Development;
Male and Female Workers (including those who are semi-employed or employed in the informal sector)
Farmers, both male and female
Elected Representatives and State Officials
Civil Society Groups, especially Media and Lawyers