Oh what a wonderful month for Abriendo Oportunidades and the networks of mentors! We have great news from Chisec and from the Council offices in Guatemala, and we want our entire GlobalGiving family to hear them.
First, the director of the Silvia Tum program traveled to El Salvador for the Central Amercian Donors Forum (CADF) invited by our friends from the Summit Foundation. Silvia, on behalf of the Population Council and Abriendo, shared her experience in the program on how sexual and reproductive health issues are addressed, as well as the approaches and opportunities to address teen pregnancy as a public health, human rights and inequality problem in Central America.
On the other hand, we had the pleasure of collaborating with our friends from Socialab, UN Women and the Clíos restaurant to hold the #MoreGirlsTogether fundraising dinner to boost the dream of the Na'leb'ak network. A few months ago we had the pleasure of telling you, our GlobalGiving family, about the Na'leb'ak center through our monthly reports. Today, the possibility of building this headquarters is a reality thanks to all the donors who supported us in our dream. We thank each one of you. Continue with us to see the progress in the construction and the impact that ensuring a safe space and generating opportunities can have on the reality of Guatemalan girls.
Wanna know more? Make sure to visit our facebook page or our special GlobalGiving link for the #MoreGirlsTogether dinner.
Such an exciting month for the Population Councila and Abriendo Oportunidades! In addition to our normal activities with the networks of mentors, girls and adolescents, the 73rd UN General Assembly happened. Our Program Director, Silvia Tum, was invited to give a speech on the event Empowering Girls, Openning Futures organized by the Council in New York and we wanted to share five key messages she pointed out:
Make sure to watch the full panel of experts in our Facebook page and to spread the news about our event. We wish to raise visibility of young indigenous women in the Americas and to disseminate the good news about girl-centered programming. Thank you, our Global Giving family, for join us in our journey and for believing in the power of girls!
During the past couple of months we have told you, our GlobalGiving friends, about the Abriendo Oportunidades mentors' networks journey for sustainability and autonomy. Na'leb'ak network, located in Alta Verapaz, is taking big steps to achieve this dream.
These young women have proposed the creation of a center that will allow them to continue, sustain and consolidate the work they do with the girls and adolescents in the municipality. Their objective is to have their own space, were they can develop diverse activities for girls and women in a safe and friendly environment, where they can meet, play and train for their integral development. The Na'leb'ak Center for Adolescent Girls (as we are calling it for now) will build on Na'leb'ak's previous work on family agriculture. The center will also focus on the regeneration of the social, economic and ecological space of the municipality. The mentors' network has proposed that this headquarters also function as a center for regenerative and responsible production focused on chickens and traditional agriculture.
Na'leb'ak, in partnership with Population Council and Socialab, is taking this vision closer and closer to reality. We hope that in the next month we will be able to share with you some exciting news about the center and the network. We kindly acknowledge this could not be possible without you, our friends. Thank you for keeping in touch and help us make the Na'leb'ak Center a dream come true. Stay tuned for fresh news on the mentors' work or visit our Facebook page for more information.
Over the past fifteen years, Abriendo Oportunidades has been working to build the technical, economical and programmatic capacities of young women working as mentors for the girls and adolescents in rural contexts. These mentors are now organized as networks and are working towards independence from the Population Council, for the autonomy to implement and design girl-centered programs all by themselves.
In 2018, Population Council and the Abriendo Oportunidades program is equipping the mentors with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills and resources that can be used in safe spaces for girls, as means to broaden their skills set. This project is aimed at creating a mentor led space for empowering girls through collaborative work using DIY technology. These spaces will be called Makerspace and will enable girls to share, create, learn, and play with each other.
Right now, we are facilitating the mentors with the knowledge to run the makerspaces and the abilities to create digital/web based projects for their communities and life (see the photos below!). We want to invite you, our GlobalGiving friend, to come with us in this process as you are part of the Abriendo family. We couldn't have done this without you. We will make sure to keep you posted on this journey and others through our monthly project reports.
With grattitude and happiness,
For almost 15 years, Abriendo Oportunidades program has worked to provide adolescent girls in rural communities with a safe space to learn about life skills and strengthen their networks of support and friendship with other girls. Throughout his process, each group of girls is accompanied by a mentor who is trained to guide girls during the program. In our journey, we have learned valuable lessons and have met many powerful young women whose work has made possible that we reach the most disadvantage girls in Guatemala.
During the last couple of months, we have been working with partner organizations to document the history and evidence around Abriendo Oportunidades, its components and what the future could look like for us. And so, to present the product of this effort, we put together an event that sought to present the labor achieved so far by the Population Council, the different components of Abriendo Oportunidades over time and its results in 14 years of implementation. There was also a space to learn about the work of the mentors throughout the program and their future as they are conforming young women leaders' networks or fulfill other aspirations.
This event took place on July 3rd on Guatemala City, and 75 mentors from around the country met to talk about life after the program, opportunities to expand the network to other places and reunite with old friends. We feel revitalized after this meeting and ready to keep working towards a sustainable change for girls and adolescents in this country.
This could not have been done without the help of our Global Giving partners and their kind contributions. In behalf of the mentors, Abriendo Oportunidades and the Population Council, we thank you for your support in our mission and that of Guatemalan women.
With gratitude and a happy heart,
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