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28/11/2012 - Paraguay

The Southern Cone is strengthened

The first regional workshop for the review of Organizational Development Plans and Technical Assistance was developed in Paraguay.

Female sex workers, referents of the four countries of the Southern Region of RedTraSex —Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay— met in Asunción together with the Technical Team of the Secretariat to work on their Organizational Development Plans and Technical Assistance and to review the necessary requirements for organizations to be considered sub-recipient organizations of the Global Fund for Regional Project’ resources. During the meeting, fellows from the network also trained in Management and Accountability (internal and external).

In the words of Lucila Esquivel, Southern Node coordinator and member of the Board of RedTraSex, the meeting was "wonderful". The leader said that there was a breakthrough from the Lima workshop (read note): "With this meeting, we clarify where we are going as organizations and as a network. We work in small groups, so we could respond all our doubts and work on specific issues", said Lucila, better known as Lucy among her fellows.

The Southern Node coordinator stressed the importance of education: "Everything we learn is like pulling out a blindfold of our eyes, training ourselves is the only way to carry out our work. We do much of what we saw, but write about it, without systematize… We understood the importance of organizing our work and I think that now we have new challenges because the capacity remaining in each organization is fantastic".

She posed the scenario that opens to network’ organizations: "It is a challenging job, we will be pointing strongly to organizations which have greatest needs at this time, and I love knowing that we will be able to accompany them. I feel today that our organization is strengthened to undertake the challenge, with the support of technical, of the Secretary, of my friends… I feel we are strengthened and have tools to share with the organizations".

The workshop provided an opportunity to exchange knowledge, but above all to strengthen a network of contention and support. Lucy stressed that she felt great support and companionship from their southern cone fellows: "I felt the confidence of my fellows and that’s important. They should know that from the political role I’m playing today, I am here for what they need, I have the knowledge of life and I will share my knowledge".

Through a participatory workshop and group work by country, each national organization developed its Organizational Development Plan and Technical Assistance. "We are getting closer to our dream. The plan that began in Lima is to have 15 strong organizations influencing their countries for sex work to be recognized as work", said Elena Reynaga, RedTraSex Executive Secretary.

Next week the same workshop will be held for the Andean Region involving Bolivia, Colombia, Peru and the coordinating country, Ecuador. Fellows await expectant and anxious this new opportunity we generate as network.