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ISCA Brings Election Training to Canada
November 22, 2013

This past week, an Island based international development organization, ISCA, has been hosting a week long training session known as BRIDGE in Ottawa. BRIDGE (or Building Resources in Democracy, Governance, and Elections) is a well-known training program to electoral practitioners throughout Africa, Asia and Europe. However, this is the first time BRIDGE training has been offered in North America. This industry leading curriculum has been developed by the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division in New York, the United Nations development Program, the Australian Electoral Commission, the International Institute of Democracy and Electoral Assistance, and the International Foundation of Electoral Systems.

ISCA (International Sustainable Community Assistance) has an interest in promoting best practices in governance, democracy, and elections as part of its own work in the countries it works internationally with, but also supporting others with an interest in building knowledge in this area. ISCA chair, Lloyd Dalziel, who is assisting in the organization of this training event, has been encouraged by the interest and demand for this type of training. “We have participants from across Canada, the United States, and as far as the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Afghanistan. When we first identified a need for this training, we were not sure what the response would be from those working in elections and governance. However, the course was filled in less than two weeks upon the announcement of the program. In addition, we continue to receive requests for a possible course in 2014.”

The week long training program covers 11 of the 24 modules including such topics as management of electoral management bodies, electoral systems used throughout the world, the electoral cycle, boundary delimitation, party financing, campaign funding, logistics of election day, voter accessibility, and voter rights. The course is delivered by two accredited facilitators, Helena Catt from Scotland and Adolfo Cayuso from Spain. “Participants come from those directly involved with elections both here in Canada and internationally but also from non-profit organizations and political parties. The interest in this training speaks to the interest in strengthening our democratic process in Canada and supporting emerging democracies” said Dalziel.

ISCA is pleased to be able to partner on this event with CANADEM, an Ottawa based organization. CANADEM manages Canada’s largest civilian roster and is responsible for deploying Canadian’s throughout the world to observe and assist with elections. As well, CANADEM has deployed individuals with policing and security backgrounds to various regions to assist in the training of police and security forces. For more information on BRIDGE training or other international projects ISCA is involved with, visit or email

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