For Geydis Fundora, professor of the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Havana (FLACSO), it is a commitment to represent her institution and share her experiences in the National Workshop on Local Development, Culture, Equity and Responsible Citizenship that took place in Matanzas from December 8 to 11, 2019, as part of the actions being held for the tenth anniversary of the Project for Intervention, Integration and Afro-Cultural Transformation in Matanzas.
-What topics are worked on in this workshop?
Geydis: -We are working in teams, composed of professionals from different backgrounds. Seven Cuban provinces are taking part in this workshop and the main objectives we set ourselves to conceive this meeting are based on facilitating the exchange of experiences and the debate on intersectionality, cultural, socioeconomic and institutional changes, based on equity for development; exchanging with protagonists of practices and projects of local and community development and strengthening the integration of the new platform Equidad-Cuba from the presentation of its participants and their work experiences.
-What are the contributions of these exchanges?
Geydis: -There are many initiatives that start from the very socio-cultural management of each of these projects that take part in the Workshop. They have different themes and modes of action. We have the Pigeon Project and the audiovisual material that they broadcast for free to educate people about gender violence. We also have invited activists and journalists from the Editorial de la Mujer, who came to share their knowledge with the various projects and institutions in the rest of the island. From Pinar del Río came La Sierpe’s projects with new styles and curious ways of participation, based mainly on their peasant culture and rural traditions. Without a doubt, this has been a day full of invaluable contributions.
-How are these workshops projected to society?
Geydis: These spaces contribute to the collective construction of improved models of cultural development from local initiatives, providing from the experience acquired the knowledge and practices necessary to be multiplied in our communities. Here we can see that we are thinking and building/managing environmental, ethnic, and gender projects, etc. This responds to the strategic axis of the National Development Plan with a view to 2030.
-What approaches do events like this present?
Geydis: The focus of these workshops is fundamentally inclusive. That is, we try to cover social diversity in all spheres. We try to see the vision of each socio-cultural project that exists in Matanzas and in Cuba as a constructive process that includes all of us, without racial, gender, or other types of discrimination, in spaces free of stigma and discrimination, where cultural directions are given to the diverse communities that make up our social spectrum, and where we come to the conclusion that these spaces must be managed on the basis of equity and responsible citizenship.
About the development and dynamics of this National Workshop of Local Development, Culture, Equity and Responsible Citizenship that is being held in Matanzas from December 8 to 11, 2019, the professor of the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences for Radio 26 summarized: “It has become a pleasant experience for the professionals and specialists who do these work sessions in order to extend their scope in reflective conversations with different approaches, which always have an excellent result because knowledge and ways of doing are shared”.
Spaces of formation of capacities that from AfroAtenAs is generated to promote the neighborhood empowerment and the knowledge towards the reach of a necessary development where the culture is placed like central axis of the same one.