Since, the Multi-Party Office (MPO) has supported the Liberal Democrats, the Democratic Unionist Party, Plaid Cymru, and the Green Party to undertake international engagement and development programmes around the world.
Programmes implemented by the smaller political parties in the UK House of Commons complement main Foundation programmes and the work of larger parties. By partnering with small opposition parties in countries dominated by one or two major political parties, Multi-Party Office programmes help build truly multi-party democracies. They share political experience that is relatable and can be adapted to local context by minority political parties campaigning on specific issues or representing a certain region or group.
Multi-Party Office programmes are partnerships that share experiences, learning and best practice. Smaller UK parties work with their sister parties and regional networks to enhance internal party rules and procedures, strengthen party branches, improve membership outreach practices, adopt evidence based and inclusive policy development processes, and increase opportunities for participation by historically marginalised groups.
"The importance of the Westminster Foundation for Democracy is not only through initiatives strengthening democracies but also in the support and inclusion of women and minority groups within these political systems. The Foundation has a profound impact because of the trust it has earned through active engagement with and commitment to over 40 nations."
"Especially at a time where democratisation appears to be faltering around the world, the Foundation remains of vital importance to our world and the UK's place within it."
The Liberal Democrats (LibDem) supports the Africa Liberal Network (ALN), Africa’s largest affiliation of liberal political parties, with workshops and trainings throughout the year. The Multi-Party Office continues to successfully deliver the Women’s Leadership Programme in collaboration with D66 and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom. The programme is designed to support women from liberal parties across Africa in their roles in parliament, political parties, and other public spheres. The programme includes training them on a range of skills relevant to enhanced effectiveness in elected office, such as issue-driving, negotiating, debating and public speaking. The MPs and Senior Party Members/Officials who participate in these leadership programmes have deepened understanding of the essential aspects of leadership by exploring them with peers and experts. Furthermore, they are equipped with exquisite skills and an enlarged network of new friends and a peer group of women politicians across Africa.
Building on its longstanding sister party relationship, previous engagements include the Young Leaders Programme with the Democratic Alliance (DA) of South Africa. This was a capacity strengthening programme that focused largely on policy development and enhanced communication skills. The LibDems supported a delegation of the top graduates to attend the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) Congress in Amsterdam where they engaged key European liberals and international youth organisations. One of the key results of the programme was the deepened connection between the DA and the wider liberal family as well as a sense of wider international context and an opening into the world of international liberalism
Video: ALN Women's Leadership Programme
This video highlights the importance of promoting women's political leadership, the goals of the ALN women leadership programme (WLP), and introduces the 2023 WLP cohort.
The WFD Multi-Party office leveraged the experiences and regional expertise of the UK political parties to support the decentralisation process in Ukraine through a joint project with WFD’s Research programme. WFD supported the amalgamation process through the Civil Society Institute in the Baranivska region of Ukraine. With the appointment of a local council, the MPO facilitated experience sharing sessions on the UK’s local government management and rural economic development. The local councillors and community leaders in the Baranivska region were assisted in the development of the district’s strategic plan and budget. Other areas of learning included lessons on building trust; mechanisms for citizen participation; ways to increase economic activity and youth employment in a rural environment as well as how to develop a shared community identity.