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 Children  Mexico Project #11133

Education for 250 working children in Chiapas

by Melel Xojobal A.C.
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas
Education for 250 working children in Chiapas

In these months, in Melel, we have set ourselves a challenge: Make a diagnosis about the situation of the children of our city.

Although our work is a constant analysis, we have decided to carry out the process aimed at knowing reality more deeply.

Thus, through games and recreational activities, we set out to inquire about those situations, causes, and consequences that violate the rights of girls and boys in terms of identity, education, health and defense of rights, among other analyzes.

Why is your name your name? What is the birth certificate for? Is it important to go to school? What do children need to live well? What injustices live daily? These, and more questions, were those worked in the weeks of diagnosis with the children of Merposur, Catedral and Santo Domingo.

We are eager to share the results! What will all this tell us?

In the next report, we'll know ...

We are now finishing, in Santo Domingo, the identity project.

This project seeks that working children talk, reflect and recognize their individual and collective identity so that they can have a critical vision of their reality and their history. This individual and collective identity focuses on being a child, indigenous, and worker. We believe that understanding their identity they get to know a little more about their reality and they will have more elements to reflect, understand their life, and understand why what happens in it happens. Finally, we consider that it is a core process and that they claim their identity, what represents them, what they consider to be theirs and, if they consider something theirs, they demand and defend it. It is from this level that the perspective of human rights, right enjoyed and not enjoyed, is addressed from Lekil Kuxlejal (Good Life) or Mauk Lekil Kuxlejal (not good life).

 

This project is to be carried out so that together with children we can take a tour of the collective history of the indigenous families we accompany. And so girls and boys can locate the present reality throughout this history and can question and understand the origin of some of the inequalities or situations they live, be they positive or negative. Moms, dads and grandmothers have a lot of wisdom through oral tradition: history, stories, legends and others, which can contribute a lot to these activities. Knowing the history will also allow knowing the present of the girls, boys, their families and of San Cristóbal. Because knowing a little more of reality, children will have more elements to reflect and understand their lives, and understand situations that they live.

My world is giant
My world is giant

On December 8, 2018, in the city of San Cristóbal, the XI Encounter of working children  "My world is giant", was held. In it, 19 girls and boys between 4 and 16 years of age met with the objective of strengthening the organization of working children for decent work.

During the day, through various games and activities, the girls and boys, from the different markets of the city, met and described their meeting and work spaces and exchanged learnings and experiences.

 

Being able to recognize themselves as working children was one of the most positive results of the day, identifying with the slogans of this group and sharing their experiences. Among the things they shared, we would like to highlight:

Child 1: we meet at the kiosk in Santo Domingo, in the museum or in the church or in the corridors, and when we meet, we talk about discrimination against indigenous people, and respect for women.

 

Child 2: we meet in Melel, Xojobal in learning circles, we learn about caxlanes (non indigenous, white people), decent work and the stories of our families. Our group is called Strong working children.

Child 3: They teach us not to be violent, and treat others well, we paint and play, we watch movies and we learn about respect for women and indigenous people.

These spaces of encounter and reflection allow children to know that they are not alone in their realities, that there are others who share their experiences, their knowledge and their struggles, making possible the collective organization and the claim for rights.

 

This is my world
This is my world
This is us
This is us
Learning circles
Learning circles
Together
Together
Public Action
Public Action

41 girls and teenagers from Mexico City, Chiapas, Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Michoacán, Oaxaca, Puebla and Veracruz, participants from CIDES, Ednica, Fondo Semillas, Sueniños, Melel Xojobal, Vientos Culturales, Aldeas Infantiles SOS, Visión Mundial, Educadys, SEIINAC, CODENI, Calpulli, El Taller and Matraca, met at the First National Encounter of Girls and Adolescents "Girls fighting and the world transforming" on October 11 and 12 in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas.

During these days, participants were able to learn about the realities of girls and adolescents in the country, participate in dance, menstruation, self-defense, yoga and gender workshops, discuss about feminism and machismo in their contexts, learning about your rights to recognize and exercise them.

The girls who are part of the education project participated in this process, being able to share with other girls and adolescents working in the State, and from other States, their experiences, their realities and the particular challenges they face as girls, indigenous and workers. After the two days of Encuentro, they made a declaration in which, among other things, they made certain demands to key actors:

---------------Detectar idiomaAfrikáansAlbanésAlemánAmáricoÁrabeArmenioAzerbaiyanoBengalíBielorrusoBirmanoBosnioBúlgaroCanarésCatalánCebuanoChecoChino (Simplificado)Chino (Tradicional)CingalésCoreanoCorsoCriollo haitianoCroataDanésEslovacoEslovenoEspañolEsperantoEstonioEuskeraFinésFrancésFrisón occidentalGaélico escocésGalésGallegoGeorgianoGriegoGuyaratíHausaHawaianoHebreoHindiHmongHúngaroIgboIndonesioInglésIrlandésIslandésItalianoJaponésJavanésJemerKazajoKirguísKurdoLaoLatínLetónLituanoLuxemburguésMacedonioMalayalamMalayoMalgacheMaltésMaoríMaratíMongolNeerlandésNepalíNoruegoNyanjaPanyabíPastúnPersaPolacoPortuguésRumanoRusoSamoanoSerbioSesotho meridionalShonaSindhiSomalíSuajiliSuecoSundanésTagaloTailandésTamilTayikoTeluguTurcoUcranianoUrduUzbekoVietnamitaXhosaYidisYorubaZulúEspañol

"We ask the authorities to exercise their office in a correct manner. That more surveillance cameras be put in cities to avoid femicides and sexual harassment.

To society in general that eliminates the stereotypes that exist about women and is open to other ways of thinking and acting.

We demand that the government and society listen to us in our families and schools.

We demand that the protection prosecutors give us fair treatment and help us when we denounce if we are beaten or mistreated.

We demand that companies pay a fair and equal salary for women and men.

We hope that our demands are not left in words and that society supports us in this cause."

The experience, unique in Mexico, was a space of encounter and struggle that, we hope, multiplies across borders.

Feminism
Feminism
Playing
Playing
Reunited
Reunited
All of us
All of us

Links:

Our current educational project in the markets of San Cristóbal is called “Telling Our Stories”. The project works to educate girl and boy laborers to talk, reflect, and recognize their individual and collective identities so that they can develop a critical view of their reality and history. These identities are focused on their being girls or boys, indigenous, and workers.

We believe that by understanding their identities, the girls and boys will come to better understand their realities and will have the skills to reflect and understand why certain things happened in their lives. This is a central process that helps to reclaim identities and create ownership.

The following is a story written by Rocio about his family as part of the “Telling Our Stories” project. Rocio participates in the educational activities with Melel Xojobal in the markets in San Cristóbal. This project encourages reading and writing for children laborers between the ages of 6 and 13. 

 

A family lived in a community, a place where there are trees, animals and beans, corn, vegetables, potatoes, tomatoes, onion and chayote. The family grew many things, like beans, and made tortillas. They went to the mountains to cut firewood, started fires, cooked food, slept and then woke up early. The came to San Cristóbal to bring seeds and to grow them.

They wore the nahua* that they made from sheep wool in many different colors. At night, it was hot and there were many animals, like chickens, ducks, dogs, and rabbits. The lekil kuxlejal (good life) in that place was very nice because there were a lot of people. 

Occasionally, they got mad because they had to fight for land, just to go for a walk or to grow things.

But one day there wasn’t any water in the land and there wasn’t electricity. They came to San Cristóbal because of that. They brought their things from their community like seeds, trees, clothes, and animals like chickens, ducks, and dogs.  

So, they went to live in San Cristóbal but first they sold their land in the community and bought new land here in San Cristóbal. They bought groceries and a small shop and started to sell things.  

The people in the city treated us badly because they said things like “Don’t buy land here!”

The city people bothered us because they wanted to buy land in the community and because we planted trees and seeds in a small piece of land.  

Finally, we were going to school. We didn’t eat any vegetables or beans, only chicken. 

 

*Nahua: traditional women’s skirt made from sheep’s wool

 

This is Rocio's story. By writing and illustrating the history of his family, he recognizes his identity and the identity of his family and begins to understand who he is in a whole new light. 

The pictures below were drawn by Rocio to accompany the history of his family.

 

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Organization Information

Melel Xojobal A.C.

Location: San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas - Mexico
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @melelxojobal
Project Leader:
Ayelén Amigo
San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas Mexico
$36,685 raised of $60,000 goal
 
972 donations
$23,315 to go
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