In the development community, there is a growing recognition that capacity development is the engine of human development. In the face of the current economic, climate and food crises, the development of capacities in states and societies to design and implement strategies that minimize the impact of these crises will be a crucial element in sustaining progress towards the achievement of development objectives.
Capacity development is based on the principle that people are best placed to achieve their full potential when the means of development are sustainable: home-grown, long-term, and collectively generated and managed by their beneficiaries.
From the perspective of VLBA, capacity development is the process by which individuals, organisations and societies gain, strengthen and maintain the skills needed to set and achieve their own development goals over time. In other words, if capacities are the means to plan and achieve, capacity development is the way to achieve those means.
An essential ingredient of the approach to capacity development is transformation. For an activity to reach the level of capacity development as promoted and practised by the VLBA, it must give rise to a transformation that is generated and sustained from within over time. Such a transformation transcends the performance of tasks and refers, rather, to a modification of mentalities and attitudes.
The VLBA intends to serve as a contribution to the theoretical and practical field of capacity building, with the aim of advancing towards the construction of real alternatives to development. This is part of a broader process of action and reflection on how to move towards an alternative horizon that allows thinking of a different, habitable and dignified world for everyone.