The path co-built with the allies at Pulsante
By Pulsante’s team
Within the changing context and high uncertainty from the countries in the region, it was crucial for Pulsante to accept the impact as a non-linear process, which has twists and turns that leave traces to build the future.
Pulsante reconceptualized what impact means, that is, it considered disruption and the process itself as an essential action, as a milestone to highlight in the development of any long-term changes in our societies.
In this process of reassessment and on the long-term perspective, that vindicates historical fights with fundamental milestones along the way, reading the context and understanding the reality in which organizations and social movements operate, as well as understanding the opportunity window, is crucial for the selection and monitoring of the initiatives.
What was the bet?
The bet was on crucial axes that have led to occupying the streets in Latin America in recent years. These axes focused on supporting processes of the Afro-descendant movement, sexual diversity and gender equality, and the citizen agenda construction for new democratic mandates, and security.
The approach to these challenges in Latin American society was adjusted according to each country, its views, actors and opportunity windows.
It is difficult to talk about each of these actions alone without doing justice to all the things that have happened collectively in these three years. Despite this, we make an effort to show different types of impact paths co-constructed with great allies, with whom we had the privilege of learning and walking during this time.
How to achieve more and better political participation?
The answer from #QuieroVermeEnElPoder in Brazil, a 90 organizations coalition, was through collaboration with movements and organizations from different sectors and paths, to be able to build over the achievements and coalitions in this field that have already been reached, and from this being able to go one step further. This campaign managed to position the lack of cultural, ethnic and racial diversity in the candidacies for popular election positions in Brazilian municipalities.
As part of the debates and spaces for reflection, the coalition involved the media, activists, and government representatives. In this context, they collectively achieved that the Supreme Federal Court increased the campaign budget for underrepresented groups, specifically, for the Afro-descendant population in the country.
How to transform our society from art?
In a context of information saturation, art has the ability to impact and reach people. These processes connect with the emotional, with the essence that mobilizes them, as it touches who they are, and achieves successful advocacy strategies. These practices do not replace traditional advocacy but complement it.
For example, a digital archive was developed, it contains the interventions from the feminist demonstrations in the public space in Mexico. This archive, on the one hand, allows the collective memory of the feminist fight from the global south to be documented, and also transforms the public discourse when it comes to its value and influences on the new narrative design. This archive will be hosted in a museum, turning this documentation of the fight into a collective good for future feminist generations.
A position of reflection on discrimination was also achieved, in traditional spaces that represent the white society hegemony, through the Afrochingonas podcast. Who have become a valid and recognized reference in the public discussion on structural racism in Mexico. In addition, its members have participated in different interventions in the media and in local and international forums, such as the AfroLatino Festival at the Museum of Latin American Art in Los Angeles, positioning a disruptive and different reflection on discrimination against Afro-descendants in Mexico.
How to build new narratives to make visible the growing militarization in the region?
The growing militarization context in Mexico makes it necessary to promote new ways of making the need for peace visible through other voices’ perspectives. Different groups articulated their action to create a narrative with greater impact. On September 15, 2022, while President López Obrador gave the cry for independence from the National Palace, as part of a comprehensive communication strategy, these groups deployed a guerrilla marketing action at the Estela de Luz, a banner with citizen counter-narrative messages such as “When will we have our independence from the army” or “No to the military coup”. This action was taken by national and international media for three days, ensuring that the illegal approval of the National Guard command relapsing to the Army was not forgotten by the independence celebrations. A resistance and democratic resilience action.
How to make participation more accessible?
It is not reached by the desire to participate and the topic’s importance. It is necessary to consider that we must invest and create the conditions for participation and the construction of a more egalitarian democracy.
#QueSepanQueSabemos, is a campaign for informed action developed by Cohesión Comunitaria e Innovación Social (CCIS), which increased the participation of women, adolescents, young people, indigenous and Afro-Mexican peoples and communities, people with disabilities and people with mobility on issues related to projects and megaprojects. The campaign was developed in 12 indigenous Mexican languages, with physical and digital materials, which allows these populations to have enough tools to demand more transparent processes and access to information on issues that affect their communities.
Federal and state authorities showed a willingness to listen to people’s proposals, and in some cases promised to draw up a joint work path. Some authorities have even raised specific considerations for some of the proposals that, in their opinion, may be viable for short-term implementation. These considerations generated discussions with different ministries.
From collective action to social transformation
Pulsante’s bet to strengthening processes led by coalitions, emerging organizations and social movements in the six countries in which it had a presence, allowed the co-construction of the path to have more vibrant democracies in Latin America.