Since we last spoke, PSYDEH
PSYDEH neared completion of our inaugural storytelling initiative funded by you. Our goal? Pursue phases 5-7 in our process-oriented program when using stories to unite, link and support the women leaders of the Network to solve their own local problems.
This action invites vulnerable women to weave their personal stories and co-design photography portraits. And we reflect on their journey together since late-2015 when co-producing high-quality videos to tell their organizations’ and network’s stories to the world.
For example, the Otomí leaders of Mujeres con Futuro focus on what it means to collaborate across different, isolated communities, and to represent their communities at the municipal and state levels. And, the Nahua women leaders of Yolki Ino Yolo focus on their textile cooperative Yoltika Moda Artesanal.
From beginning-to-near-end, PSYDEH sees clear, measured progress by women using their stories to own their power. Katie Freund, initiative co-leader, says,
“One of the many big wins is how the women have named their regional organization Siempre viva (Always Alive) with a tagline “no me olvides” (Don’t forget me). This thinking, inspired by the names of flowers in their region, speaks to how the women want to see themselves, who they are. They choose the flower “Siempre viva” because no matter where each woman is or how far apart, their Network, this organization remains alive. And “no me olvides”, styled after the commonly known Forget-me-not flower, the symbol of victims of domestic violence, has two meanings. ONE, “don’t forget me” is a rallying cry. Due to home responsibilities, it is virtually impossible for women to be at all activities. This tagline helps them remember that all women are part of the collective decision-making process and should remain steadfast in the knowledge that they are better together. TWO, the flower metaphor captures their sentiment about those women leaders whose voices have been silenced by such things as an unexpected death, violence or the need to migrate to cities or “the north” for a livable wage. Their spirits, the women explained, remain in the hearts of those who still lead the organization. They are not and cannot be forgotten.”
PSYDEH will complete storytelling work in the 3rd quarter. Thereafter, the women’s and their organizations’ stories and videos will live on their respective webpages on PSYDEH’s website.
RIGHTS = INCREASED FEMALE POLITICAL PARTICIPATION
PSYDEH completed its 2018-2019 project educating and organizing 170 rural indigenous women (and men) to use their right to access public information and right to personal data privacy to increase political participation. This work follows on the heels of our inaugural work promoting these rights and nationally recognized 2016-2017 work promoting women participation in electoral politics.
Project takeaways include:
COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY & NEW DIGITAL PLATFORM
Among PSYDEH’s myriad wins was our being chosen by the global Endeavor as one of eight mostly-global civil society organizations to speak at a private roundtable on ways to increase access to, adoption of information and communication technologies in Mexico. Learn more HERE about Endeavor’s Roundtable and our contribution.
Another win comes courtesy of our 2018-2019 collaboration with the digital communications and media giant Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN). Not only have we launched a new website in English and Spanish with a brand new look, but we’ve also updated our YouTube channel and Facebook pages in Spanish and English, as well as Twitter and Instagram. We’ve launched a new LinkedIn page too!
Our 3rd quarter 2019 report will celebrate:
¡juntos somos mejores!
In the 1st quarter of 2019,
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.
Our 2nd quarter 2019 report will celebrate PSYDEH’s:
¡PSYDEH sustaining impact!
PSYDEH finishes 2018 strong and looks to 2019 for more progress creating lasting communities of change.
Since our 3rd quarter report,
THE WOMEN WE SERVE
“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:
This work, and the other key elements of our project — embroidery initiative, NGO 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.
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 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!
Our 1st quarter 2019 report will celebrate PSYDEH’s:
¡Felices fiestas de México!
2018 is proving to be an exciting year in our pursuit of creating lasting communities of change in Mexico.
Since our last report,
NATIVE WOMEN, OUR WORK IS RIGHT AND GOOD
Remigia Rivera, pictured above and the 32-year-old Otomí president of our partner NGO "Women With a Future", is one of 20 indigenous women leaders of a network of NGOs we incubate in 2018 with your crowdfunding investment. In recent workshops, Remigia and her peers, invited to share with folks like you around the world, offer comments like "I think we must invite all of our region's communities to our work. I enjoy what we learn with PSYDEH, especially recent workshops on how we can combat violence and pursue gender equality."
Our free development work centers on strengthening women partners with knowledge on things like rights awareness and organizing training and support. In the summer/fall of 2018, this is translated into PSYDEH producing our (1) inaugural action-learning "Seed Fund" initiative, (2) innovative storytelling training, (3) embroidery investment project, and (4) conducting with women leaders a SWOT analysis of their NGOs while demonstrating the importance of organizational transparency. These actions double the return on your investment. One, you fund these actions. Two, these actions help to build the foundation from which women will launch their own actions in 2019. Two good impacts with one investment!
"We are stronger together" in pursuit of our good work. This mantra resonates with women partners confronting abandonment and isolation and it resonates with us, a small NGO working for paradigm changes in Mexico. Recent evidence of this truth includes how our:
¡Juntos Somos Mejores!
With this win-win quarterly bulletin, we write less to share more.
PSYDEH is thrilled to announce the publication of our 2017 Annual Report in two forms:
This document marks a complete redesign of how we think about reporting to donor-investors thanks to our ongoing collaboration with the global digital media and digital communications Dentsu Aegis Network. And it speaks to a seminal year for PSYDEH in 2017, which we now build into bigger and better impact in 2018.
Second, with a picture worth a thousand words, and video better than a photo, we invite you into "our living room" with these three short videos from our feminine voices series:
Our harvest is bigger and better than ever, and we invite you to share in celebrating our progress.
Happy summer from PSYDEH!
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