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Sep 3, 2020

New Normal in Tultitlan: Covid-19

We´re coming up on the 6-month anniverssary of school closures for Covid-19 in Mexico, which became official on March 23, 2020.  During this time the support Amextra provides has been more important than ever. Not only have we continued providing academic support, we have also distributed food and hygiene kits to more than 180 vulnerable families in Tultitlán (183, to be exact!).  

The education coordinators that work with Amextra in Tultitlán have shown amazing creativity, flexibility and a spirit of service during these months, moving classes to the childrens houses (always in outdoor spaces like patios and following the Health Secretary recommendations for social distancing).  Both the children and the teachers were masks and keep a safe distance away while they review important math and language topics. 

At the same time, Julio, our phychologist, has been providing psychological accompaniment via the internet and WhatsApp; and the correct use of face masks, masks, glasses, hand washing, etc. is encouraged. Ruth, Jimena and Julio continue to work together on strategies for better teaching each child.

As the epidemiological "stop light" in Mexico advances (Tultitlán is currently in organge) we will be opening the community center up to more people gradually. We are also beginning to explore the project of installing more hand washing stations in Tultitlán, thanks to our long-time partner Agua Pura para el Pueblo. 

These last few months have been a test to our resilience and we expect the next few months to continue to be a challenge and a learning process. One thing that will not change is our committment to vulnerable families and our promise to accompany them in increasing their quality of life, through educacion, health, environmental care and income generation projects. This support is more important now than ever.

As always, thank you for joining us!

 

Stephanie Ahlgrain

Manager of Fundraising and Alliances

Amextra

www.amextra.org

Jul 28, 2020

A narrative for change in Chiapas

There's a young girl who does not want to get married and pleads with her mother not to force her to do so, but the mother tells her it's her duty. The wedding is celebrated...Over time, when the girl's husband arrives home - sometimes drunk - he gets angry because his food is not ready.  Also, sometimes, he wants to have sex with the girl, but she refuses because of his aggressive tone, because he smells like alcohol and because he is spending money on beer, instead of buying food for the family.  Since she doesn't want to have sex, he calls her a prostitute and accuses her of having a lover.  To prevent him from hitting her, the girl succumbs to his sexual advances.

The story you just read is not real, but it´s written to seem as if it were. The characters and story line are based on data obtained from the analysis of more than 120 interviews carried out in five Tzeltal communities, and is part of the educational materials that will be used to inspire a deep and honest dialogue on gender relations and violence in Ocosingo., Chiapas.This story, and 24 others that are in the process of being drafted and translated into Tzeltal, are supported by testimonies and reflect the difficult reality of many women in indigenous communities in this state.The stories will be grouped into five books and are a fundamental part of the project "Ending violence through Community Narrative Practice"  that is being carried out by Amextra in collaboration with the American anthropologist Dr. Kathleen Cash.  

Thankfully, at the moment the Covid-19 global pandemic is not affecting our timing on this project, as we are in the phase of drafting the stories and fictional characters from these interviews, which can be done from a distance. Once all 24 stories are created we will plan the thirf phase of the project, in which local leaders are trainedto lead focus groups using these story books to inspire reflection on the violence and gender roles they expose. 

Thank you for joining us on this journey. With every story written we are one step closer to bringing them to communities and beginning the implementation stage of the Community Narrative Practice project in Chiapas.  

Jul 7, 2020

A narrative for change in Chiapas

There's a girl who does not want to marry and pleads with her mother not to force her to do so, but the mother tells her  it's her duty. The wedding is celebrated...Over time, when the girl's husband arrives home - sometimes drunk - he gets angry because the food is not prepared.  Also, sometimes, he wants to have sex with the girl, but she refuses because of his aggressive tone, because he smells like alcohol and because he is spending money on beer, instead of buying food for the family.  Since she doesn't want to have sex, he calls her a prostitute and accuses her of having a lover.  To prevent him from hitting her, the girl succumbs to his sexual advances.

The story you just read is not real, but it´s written to seem as if it were. The characters and story line are based on data obtained from the analysis of more than 120 interviews carried out in five Tzeltal communities, and is part of the educational materials that will be used to inspire a deep and honest dialogue on gender relations and violence in Ocosingo., Chiapas.This story, and 24 others that are in the process of being drafted and translated into Tzeltal, are supported by testimonies and reflect the difficult reality of many women in indigenous communities in this state.The stories will be grouped into five books and are a fundamental part of the project "Ending violence through Community Narrative Practice"  that is being carried out by Amextra in collaboration with the American anthropologist Dr. Kathleen Cash.  

Thankfully, at the moment the Covid-19 global pandemic is not affecting our timing on this project, as we are in the phase of drafting the stories and fictional characters from these interviews, which can be done from a distance. Once all 24 stories are created we will plan the thirf phase of the project, in which local leaders are trainedto lead focus groups using these story books to inspire reflection on the violence and gender roles they expose. 

Thank you for joining us on this journey. With every story written we are one step closer to bringing them to communities and beginning the implementation stage of the Community Narrative Practice project in Chiapas.  

 
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