ONG Expo Outcome
By Jade Arroyo
The importance of the ONG (non-profit organizations) Expo is to recognize the existence of social work done by the municipality and create a communication channel, so that people can approach an organization and see the work that it performs and access their service. Associations get to know each other, encouraging the creation of networks to cover more sectors. The Expo was held at the Plaza Cívica last November 23.
In an interview for Atención, Fernanda Esparza, from the ONG’s Liaison Office, talked about some highlights of this Expo and the fulfillment of their expectations.
In the city there are 150 legally constituted non-profit associations; 85 are registered properly at in the municipality. At the Expo, 41 participated, including two guests from Leon and Irapuato. “The invitation was extended to all registered organizations. Generally those who participated in the Expo are those active in the community, the ones who are doing the work. For some of them who are highly busy it is difficult to attend both days, such as those who are overwhelmed by their workload, as is Patronato Pro Niños. There are also associations that are created and only exist on paper, but are not actually working. Most of the participants at the Expo are the ones who always had a presence and are seen working and making an impact on society,” said Esparza.
A panel discussion on challenges faced by organized associations was created. The panel will continue unfolding. It will create forums for dialogues among them and how to improve relationships with the government.
The first discussion included as moderator Supporting People Entrepreneurship (Apoyo a Gente Emprendedora), Silvia López from Proyecto Laubach of Literacy from Irapuato, Agustín Madrigal of Save the Río Laja, Irma Rosado from Ojalá Niños, Atahualpa Caldera from Gaia, Rosana Alvarez from Via Orgánica, and José Luis Mendoza from El Sindicato.
“The discussion was very lively with different opinions and views, and with different sectors coming together to share experiences and challenges. There was a greater participation in general over previous times.”
The purpose of this panel is to define the relationship between organized civil society and government. In January the outcome/proposal on how that relationship should be approached will be delivered by the panel.
Several associations took action during the Expo. CASA A.C and Collectivo 41 showed the greatest impact by performing free HIV testing. IREE offered their plans for school for the deaf children; there were people who did not know of its existence or its services. Via Orgánica offered training on organic and urban gardens, and Casa de los Ángeles had its childcare for single mothers. “We let people know that there is an association that can help them and to showcase each service offered,” said Esparza.
The Director of NGO’s Liaison office, Theresa Guerrero, told of some of the initiatives planned, such as creating a project of a “mobile museum” with a trailer and going to the communities, with the participation of the Museo del Juguete, and teaching workshops on human values.
Also, there are plans to give workshops for associations on building laws and improving their management and to make the Expo grow, offering more professional workshops and events in a more dynamic way.
To register a non-profit in the portfolio of the municipality, you need to bring its charter, fill out a registration form, and receive a visit to check social work.