Globally, men are most likely to be implicated in the deadliest manifestations of violence. Through the project “More Young Men for Equality”, we emphasize their involvement as a key part for constructing a culture of peace in our communities. Since 2017, we have developed training workshops and experiential meetings with 992 young people to inspire them to commit themselves to peace and equality by creating networks and transformative actions with a focus on masculinity.
Achieving gender equality is one of the sustainable development objectives set by the United Nations in the 2030 agenda. Through “More Young Men for Equality” IIPSIS aims to contribute to the fulfillment of this objective by offering our participants the possibility of reinterpreting masculinity under parameters of respect for human rights. Although we consider that the public and media rejection of expressions of machismo is a watershed for cultural transformation, we also believe that parallel to these actions we must hold spaces to reflect, imagine and accompany us collectively in the creation of new paradigms. We often work with mixed groups and encourage the same kind of deconstruction and empowerment exercise in women. We do not want machismo to be increasingly silent and dangerous, we want it to lose strength because it is no longer an interesting option for the new generations.
With the initial support from TPP, we were able to establish a point of reference for the social action proposal that IIPSIS wants to offer to our community, facing the climate of violence that exists in our country. We were enthusiastic about the potential of encounter, collective thinking and experiential learning for leaving a significant mark in the lives of young people. The initiative began to make visible that working with men is a key piece in the construction of social peace, and this led to other local organizations and public institutions starting to address the issue.
Our project has grown in terms of direct impact with young people from disadvantaged sectors. However, to sustain this initiative, we need to strengthen the community’s recognition of our work and create closer links with other actors who share our interest. For this purpose, the impact fund will be used to expand the offer of workshops on gender and masculinities and, at the same time, to promote the growth of the IIPSIS youth volunteer team. At the end of 2019 we will organize a public colloquium to disseminate results and establish continuity alliances.