Since 1998, the core of Minga's work has taken place in the Peruvian Amazon, a region rich with indigenous cultures and biodiverse rainforest along with high rates of poverty, HIV/AIDS, domestic abuse, and social injustice. However, the region’s people are also resilient leaders, deeply committed to their communities and land.
RADIO FOR SOCIAL CHANGE
Our intercultural radio program Bienvenida Salud (“Welcome Health”) has been on-air for 20 years. We broadcast on average 3 episodes per week, and each reaches over 120,000 listeners in hundreds of communities across an extremely remote landscape. Each program is based on listener letters, which arrive at Minga’s central office after several days' journey by boat. To date we have received over 40,000 letters and have produced over 1,700 episodes on social issues such as domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, the value of gender equality, human rights, and bio-cultural preservation.
We invite our most active listeners to become community “promotoras” and attend three years of progressive training at our training center where they learn about human rights, disease and abuse prevention, civic participation, and environmental stewardship. The promotoras develop leadership and share their new skills and knowledge within their own communities. They also become part of a peer-learning network. To date, over 1,200 women from 50 rural communities have been trained, along with hundreds of teachers, government officials, and nature reserve staff.
CONSERVING NATURAL RESOURCES
Minga works in rural, indigenous communities in the buffer zone of the Pacaya Samaria National Reserve, an area of important bio-diversity that has been under increasing threat. Minga is helping to deepen local understanding and action to conserve local plant species, reconnect with indigenous languages and values, and increase food security while protecting the environment. Minga and local partners have:
Established a native plant nursery and fishponds that are helping to decrease pressure on the rainforest and rivers while supporting families to feed themselves;
Developed radio programs on bio-cultural conservation themes;
Collaborated with teachers, students and parents’ associations to integrate bio-cultural themes into rural school curricula;
Engaged youth, adults and elders to revitalize the Kukama language, culture, and values.
FICE TRAINING PROGRAMS IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN (LAC)
The success of Minga’s work in Peru over the past 20 years has made it a regional leader in sharing its model with grassroots groups, NGOs and government bodies throughout LAC. Through FICE (Institutional Strengthening for Strategic Communications), Minga helps organizations make their human rights and community development work more effective, inclusive, and sustainable.
Since 2011, Minga has trained more than 300 leaders from the Dominican Republic, Peru, Panama, Ecuador, Colombia, and Guatemala, including 109 distinct indigenous groups.
FICE trains leaders and organizations to:
Develop a communications strategy that is grounded in identity and core values;
Design materials and campaigns to reach specific audiences with defined social change goals;
Measure and analyze the impact of their actions; and
Communicate for sustainability.