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NGO & Indigenous Women Sustaining Impact in Mexico

by Psicologia y Derechos Humanos PSYDEH A.C.
NGO & Indigenous Women Sustaining Impact in Mexico
Josefina (photo by Diogo Heber)
Josefina (photo by Diogo Heber)

In the 1st quarter of 2019,

  • we mourn the loss of a colleague while making progress in the field,
  • our special projects coordinator sets to launch our next crowdfunding campaign, and
  • we pursue new global relationships

CONFRONTING UNEXPECTED LOSS WHILE PUSHING FOR PROGRESS

In late-January 2019, our colleague Josefina Merced Velasco Velasco died unexpectedly from liver complications. We are devastated by this loss. As one of her peers said on the day of her funeral, and obvious from this tribute video “she was a great source of joy to all those with whom she worked.”

Josefina lived with her husband in the community of El Nandho, San Bartolo Tutotepec where they grew coffee and peanuts and raised pigs. Among the 120 people living in her community, 95% are indigenous, almost 40% of women are illiterate with their averaging a second-grade education. 80% of homes have electricity, but there are no computers, fixed telephones, nor internet. Click HERE to learn more about Doña Josefina.

Like all who face loss, we mourn. And we work to honor Josefina’s legacy by making field progress in 2019 work to promote smart use of the rights to access public information and protect personal data.

THE WOMEN WHO SERVE WITH PSYDEH LAUNCHING A NEW CAMPAIGN

Mahathi Kumar is a U.S. Fulbright-García Robles Scholar to Mexico, 2018-2019 where her day job is English-language academic assistant at La Universidad Politécnica Francisco I. Madero in Tepatepec, Hidalgo. As volunteer Special Projects Coordinator, Mahathi writes, “What strikes me about PSYDEH is the importance of story-telling. Every person has their own story to tell in their own voice. It is an honor to work with a group of people who are so committed to making these stories heard and to harnessing them to make a change."

Mahathi helps PSYDEH with creative material design and production, new internal policy development and leads our newly launched “Sustain Impact” global crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to underwrite our new bilingual female Coordinator of Sustainability, as well as ongoing fieldwork.

See this Campaign FAQ for more detail.  And CLICK HERE to donate!

PSYDEH CONTINUES NATIONAL AND GLOBAL OUTREACH 

First quarter outreach efforts have been nothing short of extraordinary.

  • We published our first novel animated lesson in English and Spanish on program work.
  • We explore interesting collaborations with the British Council, among other global funders and friends. 

LOOKING FORWARD 

Our 2nd quarter 2019 report will celebrate PSYDEH’s:

  • continued success in the field,
  • ongoing crowdfunding work, and
  • expected wins in national and global outreach

¡PSYDEH sustaining impact!

Mahathi Kumar (photo by Mayra Linares for COMEXUS)
Mahathi Kumar (photo by Mayra Linares for COMEXUS)
INE 2019 fieldwork (photo by Diogo Heber)
INE 2019 fieldwork (photo by Diogo Heber)

Links:

Guillermina, Otomi leader of "Flor del Bosque"
Guillermina, Otomi leader of "Flor del Bosque"

PSYDEH finishes 2018 strong and looks to 2019 for more progress creating lasting communities of change.

Since our 3rd quarter report,

  • women partners start to tell their stories.
  • PSYDEH was chosen as one of GlobalGiving’s top 15 NGOs committed to impact in 2018.
  • 2016-2018 project success leads to new exciting work in 2019.

THE WOMEN WE SERVE

Guillermina writes,

“I left school and started doing housework at the age of eight. With my being one of 16 siblings, there wasn’t enough food to eat nor money for education. Some of my siblings studied until high school, but I didn't. My parents said the school was too dangerous for me. At the age of 20, I married a humble man dedicated to farming. He studied until the third grade in primary school. I had 4 children to whom I have dedicated my life to help them get ahead. My oldest daughter studied until the first semester of college but then quit; I could not support her anymore and my husband did not want to support her. My other three children studied through high school but no further. They saw that they had no chance to pursue a profession and decided to cross to the north, where they now make their lives and have become parents, too. With my children off leading their own lives, I used my free time to study primary and then secondary school. I’ve earned my certificate. Now, I like to teach others what I learn with PSYDEH, to give support to those who need me.”

Guillermina’s story is one of 20 narratives PSYDEH helps to create with women leaders of our partner NGO network. Why? Stories bind us, they define who we are and what people think of us, and what we think of ourselves. We connect, collaborate, and make fairer, more inclusive societies through the compelling stories we weave, knowing that the most personal is the most universal.

Thanks to your investment in PSYDEH, our novel storytelling initiative will end with:

  • women like Guillermina presenting their stories before 100s of people at the 5th Regional Forum in spring 2019, and
  • these stories highlighted on the women’s NGO's pages in PSYDEH's website.

This work, and the other key elements of our project — embroidery initiativeNGO strengthening, and seed fund — will be completed by April 2019, just in time for women and their organizations to use the fruits of this work to strengthen their chances of securing funding from the new Mexican federal government.

GROWING FOOTPRINT

End of 2018 bears exciting tidings about PSYDEH’s growing brand.

GLOBALLY, (1) we have just been chosen as one of the top 15 nonprofits in GlobalGiving’s network committed to sustained impact in 2018. To be chosen as the only Mexican NGO on the list, from among hundreds of NGOs around the world, is seen by PSYDEH as the greatest of honors. (2) We continue to explore a multi-year collaboration with the Hamburg, Germany based Lemonaid & ChariTea Foundation. (3) We look to leverage our partnership with USA-based professionals of the global Dentsu Aegis Network into a 2019 collaboration with their Mexico-city based colleagues.

NATIONALLY, (1) we wrap up our three-year term as Hidalgo’s only NGO representative to the Consejo Consultivo, the citizen board advising the government on indigenous community development. Among the national policies for which we’ve pushed is Mexico’s first national institute to guarantee rights for indigenous communities. (2) We now explore with GlobalGiving’s Mexico representative a seat on their new national leadership council of high-performing NGOs.

PROJECTS BUILDING OFF THE OTHER

PSYDEH just finished our first project with a national institute focused on fighting corruption (INAI) — another great opportunity to use our scalable program to make a sustained impact. Here, we are one of 22 Mexican NGOs across the Republic promoting knowledge and activism around the rights to access public information and to the protection of personal data. Why? For PSYDEH, these rights are the keys to citizens exercising all other rights. See HERE our short film promoting these rights and this project.

By design, this 2018 project and our nationally recognized 2016-2017 work strengthening women’s participation in Mexico’s democracy has led to PSYDEH being chosen for a new project to strengthen women’s leadership in electoral processes in 2019. We are stronger together, especially when strategically smart! 

LOOKING FORWARD 

Our 1st quarter 2019 report will celebrate PSYDEH’s:

  • first animated lesson in Spanish and English,
  • current USA Fulbright colleague Mahathi Kumar,
  • revamped website, and
  • continued success in the field.

¡Felices fiestas de México!

Storytelling training workshop
Storytelling training workshop
Storytelling training workshop II
Storytelling training workshop II

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Psicologia y Derechos Humanos PSYDEH A.C.

Location: Santiago Tulantepec - Mexico
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @psydeh
Project Leader:
Damon Taylor
Santiago Tulantepec, Mexico
$2,304 raised of $10,000 goal
 
27 donations
$7,696 to go
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