Coming Together Through Our Strengths to Transform the World
The 13th AWID Forum was impressive. More than 1,600 feminist women of all nationalities, colors, and causes came together to become stronger, building upon our potential, not focusing on our vulnerabilities. Language was not a barrier to learning from one another or to hearing the lively voice of our struggles. Struggles that move us and mobilize us around the world for our rights, encouraging us to recreate ourselves, rethink ourselves, and to jointly create new paths towards the future that we are building.
The Forum also allowed us to better understand the state of the movement globally, as well as the particular or similar contexts in which we all live. For example, something that is happening in several countries around the world is that governments are not defending our rights. In many cases they are accomplices or a part of the oppression. Therefore, even though laws exist, they do not protect us or offer justice. This situation drives us to seek new ways to join forces, advocate, and provide support.
Our Participation in the Forum
The agenda of the forum was diverse and enriching on many levels. There were mass plenaries with presenters from different parts of the world and simultaneous transmission. There were also working groups and self-created spaces where you could listen and exchange ideas with other participants.
FCAM directly participated in 4 sessions – two as organizers and two as presenters. We co-presented with our allies on, “The Transformative Power of Individual Donors” and “Women’s Rights and Environmental Justice: the Power of Working Across Movements.” We also co-organized the sessions, “Ties and Actions of Solidarity Among Women Human Rights Defenders, from the IM-Defenders” and “Women Resisting Mining Exploitation.”
These experiences allowed us to share with other participants about the scale of our work, from the strategic action of the individual to the collective action needed for the sustainability of movements, during difficult times, in the face of great challenges and setbacks. In light of this, we shared what Lidia Alpizar said: “Resource mobilization is political, beyond writing proposals, it is influencing the use of resources.”
And resource mobilization requires the activism of committed individuals from the feminist philanthropy perspective, driven like droplets of change to create sustainable transformations, something that Claudia Samcam (FCAM), spoke about very clearly in her presentation about individual donors:
“Feminist philanthropy is not a charitable act, nor is it an act of power. It is an act of solidarity and mutual empowerment, in which the solutions to the problems that women face are seen as a matter of mutual responsibility. It is about how people commit to a cause through their money and resources, and how through feminist philanthropy we are awakening discomfort for gender inequity.”