Monday, September 30, 2013

Towards a More Balanced Social Change Approach workshop

Popular Education Consultants (PECI) is going to facilitate the mini-workshop "Toward a more balanced Social Change Approach" in Asheville, North Carolina, October 3 for the Hispanics in Philanthropy Grantee Convening. This workshop develops the idea that to increase social change impact, organizations could combine services provision, advocacy/lobby and systemic change in a more balanced approach.

Using participatory exercises the participants in this workshop will reflect about their social change practice to determine their impact. 

First, they list all the activities they perform. Then, they organize them according to the kind of social action they are: 1. Services provision (ESL, citizenship classes, legal assistance, etc.) . 2. Advocacy (promoting immigration reform, visits to legislators, public demonstrations, petitions to public authorities, etc.) 3. Systemic change (addressing root causes of discrimination, changing the predominant negative perception about Latino Immigration, political representation of Latino´s interests in the public spheres, political participation, etc.)

Then, the participants reflect on what is they are doing the most. Usually, organizations are putting stress on one of the three types of activities. Some times in two of them. 

Then, they reflect on how to combine those three types of social action activities to increase their social impact. Providing services brings the organization closer to communities, knowing first hand their needs and demands. Advocacy activities raise the communities´social and political awareness and their influence on political agendas and the creation of inclusive laws and policies. Systemic change activities change perceptions about communities and their positive contributions to the larger society. 

Finally, organizations plan a strategy of how to combine these three different approaches in one common and balanced approach. 

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