Mexico is a powerful emerging economy and its government has generous social programs, including the National Crusade Against Hunger. But progress continues to elude a large number of people living in extreme poverty. In 2016, over 43% of the population lived in poverty, accounting for more than 53 million people. (UN)
Poverty rates in indigenous communities are disproportionately high, when compared with non-indigenous communities. And within the highly patriarchal social structure of indigenous communities, women have the least power and least access to productive resources. These structural causes of poverty are a challenge to overcome, but are not insurmountable.
We are committed to reaching the hardest to reach in Mexico — the 4.7 million people living in indigenous, rural and historically marginalized communities across 20 of the country’s 32 states. In 2020, we began piloting a new approach focused on partnership and advocacy that will bring entire municipalities to self-reliance. Our work focuses on five states — Chiapas, Oaxaca, San Luis Potosí, Estado de México and Yucatán.
Over the next 10 years, we plan to have impact across all 20 states. Within this strategy our emphasis continues to be on self-reliance at the community level, measured by indicators that fall into seven distinct categories: leadership and governance, government cooperation, sustainable development, mindset shift, food security, women’s empowerment and revenue.
Our programs combine work with elected leaders across all levels of government to recognize and support marginalized communities with community-level programming focused on empowering leaders, particularly women, to advocate for themselves and for the resources that they need— based on their own assessments and desires for their community. From our work to date, we have seen inspiring outcomes including:
- Communities building a positive recognition of women’s public participation and acknowledgement of the historical inequity women have faced
- New relationships with municipal authorities that recognize the autonomy of the communities
- An organic “train the trainer” chain where women who have worked with The Hunger Project are training other women, creating new roles as leaders and providers
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The Hunger Project
110 West 30th Street, 6th Floor,
New York, NY 10001
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