It was an honor to share my views as a speaker on the panel with other amazing women doing tremendous work in their communities. The Ethics in Public Engagement Webinar was an eye opener and a reminder that I’m responsible for the change I want to see in my community, more importantly in civil engagement.
In the Global South, our lack of involvement in public engagement and civil engagement has led to the “White Savior Model.” It is important for organizations working in the global South to come up with an exit strategy, and work towards implementing programs that empower communities and individuals to be self sufficient. On the other hand, we need to keep the spirit of resilience and handwork going—we shouldn’t be blinded from recognizing and acknowledging our problems.
Civil Societies are the voice of ethics and accountability. These groups and organizations should be morally accountable towards the people they were established to help. It is important to have focus areas and stories of change to ensure their tactics are working and bringing actual change.
As a professional in an organization working in the grassroots in Kenya, this webinar offered a fresh perspective to what civil engagement means to me and my organization, PendoAfrica. Whether we will be mentoring boys and providing sanitary pads to girls, or giving hope to teenage mothers or ensuring young people affected by drugs and alcohol addiction are free of addiction and have a chance to rewrite their stories, I believe it is important to also empower our beneficiaries to be the change agents in their own communities.