CIVICUS’ General Secretary was in Argentina with RACI!

On July 5th and 6th Danny Sriskandaraj, CIVICUS’ General Secretary, World Alliance for Citizen Participation, visited our country for the first time. During his stay in Buenos Aires, RACI took him to meetings with representatives of the Civil Society, Government and Private Sector.

Throughout his visit, the General Secretary of CIVICUS could meet up with Tamar Hahn Director of the United Nations for Argentina and Uruguay; Josè Ugaz, Transparency International’s President; Hugo Wortman Jofre and Pablo Secchi, Poder Ciudadano’s President and Executive Director respectively; Anabel Cruz, CIVICUS’ President; Maria Julia Diaz Ardaya, GDFE’s President; Guillermo Correa, RACI’s Executive Director and the Executive Committee.

Within his agenda, and with the aim of listening the greatest diversity of voices as possible, Danny Sriskandarajah met the National Development Minister, Carolina Stanley, to know her viewpoint about the reality of the Argentinian Civil Society.

To conclude his stay, RACI realized an event with its partners where it was possible to discuss and share different positions about the Civil Society’s status worldwide and in Argentina in particular; and where the CIVICUS’ General Secretary, could be interviewed by different media.


One more year of learning at Kettering Foundation

Part of the RACI team went to Dayton, Ohio in the United States, where it continued with the workshop about Deliberative Democracy that provides the Kettering Foundation.

With a working dynamic fully renewed, and the development of an application specially thought for the participants; the Kettering Foundation welcomed guests from all over the world with the goal of learning and sharing experiences about the deliberative methodology that teaches the Institute of Deliberative Democracy each year.

This year, part of the RACI Team went to Dayton with the aim to share the project “Leave no one behind”, conducted during last October in the Embassy of Canada, where were put into practice several characteristics of the methodology promoted by the Foundation. The Argentinian case study was a trigger for the opening of one of the session in which participants from South Africa, India and Fiji shared as well their experiences.

As part of the changes, the Foundation developed an application which, apart from including contacts of every participant, week’s agenda and the materials which will be used; had interactive spaces where was able to make comments or to ask questions in real time about speakers’ presentations, and to make group exercises during the sessions. Another great new was the presence of designers who captured each session with drawings and graphics which decorated the event rooms’ walls during the full week.

In a unique opportunity to create networking with people from all over the world, the team had the chance to make contact with representatives from public sector, private sector, the Academy and Third Sector which made easy the sharing of experiences and possibilities to form potential alliances which would lead to common projects in the future.


We continue visiting our partners!

Among all the activities promoted by the Network, since last year, RACI continues to implement a schedule of visits to partner organizations with the objective of bringing the teams closer together, knowing the themes in which they work and the communities they support on a daily basis.

On this occasion RACI visited Tzedaká Foundation, an organization with more than 25 years working in the sector focused on the fight against poverty mainstreamed by different complementary programs that make the integrality with which the problems in the Foundation are treated.

Over the years, the Foundation has been able to develop different accompanying programs that are divided into the following axes: education, health, housing, childhood and old age. Among all the activities carried out within the different axes of action, we highlight the uninterrupted receipt of donations of medicines which are classified, systematized and re organized to be donated again.

During the visit, the group of volunteers, together with the Tzedaká staff, explained the exhaustive procedure of analysis of donations that has a first stage of discarding those drugs that are due or about to expire. Those that are in conditions to be consumed are grouped according to their drug and dose and the carton is classified and any other material that can be recycled.

In the same process, the volunteers, and later the team of pharmacists, systematize all the data that allow the organization to obtain the traceability of each drug before being sent to its final destination: direct beneficiaries of a Tzedaká program or indirect beneficiaries such as hospitals.

Thanks to the commitment of a large team of professionals and the volunteer network they have developed, they provide direct assistance to more than 11,000 people and approximately 35,000 indirectly.

From RACI we thank the Foundation for having received the team and let you know more about the excellent work they do.


RACI has a new publication!

On June 23, 2017, the Argentine Network for International Cooperation organized the launch of its new publication “Strengthening the local private social investment agents. Disseminating ideas, creating links” at Telefonica Foundation.

Thanks to the support of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, RACI was able to gather experiences from key representatives of the Private Sector, with the objective of strengthening the process of Local Private Social Investment for development in Argentina. This publication seeks to create the basis for private social investors to increase their impact and articulation with different actors.

During the launch day, both civil society organizations and representatives of the private sector were present at the event that had a panel composed of: Carlos March, Director of Strategic Communication of AVINA Foundation; Inés Castro Almeyra, Executive Director of Navarro Viola Foundation; María Julia Díaz Ardaya, President of the Group of Foundations and Companies (GDFE) and Manager of Corporate Social Responsibility Grupo Clarín and Agustina Catone, Director of Fundación Telefónica.

They were responsible for sharing and exchanging experiences and ideas with the public to analyze the contributions made by the Private Sector in the Third Sector and vice versa.

Publication will be available soon for free download in the Virtual Library of our website at:


CIVICUS launched its new report: State of Civil Society 2017

CIVICUS, the global civil society alliance, in which RACI is member, published its annual Civil Society report. The report analyzes main facts and events that are relevant for global civil society.

 The first part of the brief is focused on two disturbing problems: the shrinking space for civil society and regressive policies revival, complemented by the rise of right-wing politics leaders.

The world faces a democratic crisis because civil rights had been restricted: right of free speech, freedom of assembly and association. The report highlights how dangerous it is to challenge the power and the risks that are involved in the mere fact of dissent.

The special issue of the 2017 edition addresses the relationship between civil society and the private sector. The main idea analyzed this year is the urgent need to convince companies of the importance of civic space. The relevance of companies at a global level is becoming larger; According to the report three quarters of the world’s 100 largest economies are corporations and national states. The growing influence of the private sector can play an important role in safeguarding civil liberties. And so the report presents a series of responses and recommendations to work together and urge companies to take an active engagement with civil society.

The report also features a series of interviews with people involved in the main stories of the moment, an annual survey of the members of AGNA (Affinity Group of National Associations) and 27 articles about the relationship of civil society and the private sector written by representatives of Civil Society Organizations, public and private sector.

To read the full report, visit:



World Financing to the ODS reached USD $ 140,853,928,210!

Every year, the SDG Philanthropy Platform updates its information and data on grants awarded by private foundations and those awarded by Official Development Assistance (ODA).  According to this platform, between 2010 and 2015, USD $ 140,853,228,210 was the amount that reached the global funding from private foundations for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Among the most important donors, the report highlights: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Ford Foundation, Susan Thompson Buffet Foundation, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the W.K Kellogg Foundation, among others.

The data provided by the Platform allow a comparative analysis between the amount of resources coming from Official Development Assistance and those that come from the philanthropic sector.

First, with regard to Official Development Assistance, the report shows that the funds are mostly working for SDGs linked to poverty reduction, zero hunger, health and well-being, quality education, the existence of sustainable cities and peace and justice. To a lesser extent, these funds are working for responsible production and consumption, reducing inequalities and fighting for gender equality.

On the other hand, the Funds from the philanthropic sector are mainly directed to projects related to health and well-being, quality education and gender equality. These funds are almost non-existent if we talk about reducing inequalities, reducing poverty, strengthening partnerships and protecting terrestrial ecosystems.  According to the platform, among the most recipients of Private Foundations fund´s are the United States, India, Great Britain, Mexico, China, Israel, Nigeria, among others.

The mission of the SDG Philanthropy Platform is to provide essential data to foster partnerships between Philanthropy, the United Nations, Governments, the Private Sector and Civil Society Organizations. The information provided by the platform is based on the information collected by the Center Foundation on the 1000 largest organizations in the United States and foundations in other countries that provided their data voluntarily to the Foundation. Although it is one of the most complete platforms that measures the commitment of the philanthropy with the SDG, this commitment is not completely represented, since there are Foundations whose data remained outside. However, it is important to mention that among the objectives of the Platform are: to expand the database so that it can provide information and increasingly comprehensive updates on the development assistance provided by different philanthropic foundations worldwide.



Institutional Visit to Asociación de Ayuda al Ciego ASAC

On Friday, May 26, the RACI team visited one of its partner organizations, a strategic activity that has been carried out monthly since 2016 with the aim of sharing an exchange day and getting to know its members more closely. This time it was tAsociación de Ayuda al Ciego ASAC (ASAC).

The visit was made in the morning. Verónica Martella, Head of Fund Development at the institution, was waiting for us. She gave us a warm welcome and a general description of the organization, its history and the services it offers.

Born in 1963, ASAC is an organization that works to improve the quality of life of people with visual impairment through comprehensive care. Its services are divided into four working modalities: Rehabilitation, Labor Training, Day Center, and Home; All of them of great importance to achieve the objective of the organization.

The first step of our journey was to the rehabilitation area, where the Vice President of the institution, Graciela Morel, along with therapists and some attendees taught us how they work. This area is the oldest, and has two services. In the first place, the Integral Functional Rehabilitation service, whose objective is to make people develop their autonomy to the maximum. The treatment involves medical and psychological assessment and monitoring, and the development of skills for everyday life such as occupational therapies and communication techniques. But it also has a Visual Rehabilitation service, aimed at people with low vision who wish to improve their visual efficiency. In both cases the treatment is totally personalized, responding to the possibilities, needs and desires of each attendant.

The Labor Training and Day Center modalities were added later, but are intertwined with Rehabilitation. The first is a training proposal that seeks the reintegration of people, one of the prerequisites being that the person is independent in their mobility and personal responsibilities. In the Center of day, on the other hand, they offer a great amount of workshops and activities. In this space, the skills and behaviors learned are strengthened, socialization is favored, and families are supported and guided.

Finally, and although we were not able to visit it, ASAC also has a home located in the Almagro neighborhood, which provides coverage to independent and visually impaired adults who are homeless or have socio-family problems. The Hogar provides basic resources such as housing, food, and medical and nutritional controls, and offers most of the services that can be found at headquarters.

RACI is deeply grateful to the whole team of the Aid to the Blind Association for allowing us to know closely the work they do and the warmth provided throughout the day.

For more information, visit the organization’s website:


What is the Regional Center of Civil Society for Latin America and the Caribbean?

The Regional Center of Civil Society for Latin America and the Caribbean was responsible for launching the First Collaborative Economy Lab. We interviewed members and participants of this event so you can know a little more of what’s it about.

This Center, as well as the Centers of  other regions, arose from a global initiative launched by the then President of the United States Barack Obama in his speech to the UN in 2013, where he acknowledge the deciding role of the Civil Society in finding high impact solutions to global and local issues.

The differences and similarities between the Latin American Regional Center and the other Regional Centers is that this Center has bet heavily for innovation. It’s a very open Regional Center that wants to highlight the impact of Civil Society in Latin America and has focused a lot on collaborative economy to share resources between the Regional Centers, and promote the solidarity between the CSOs of the region.” expressed Gerardo Torres, Program Associate of Innovation for Change.

The Collaborative Economy Lab, launched in Buenos Aires and sponsored by CIVICUS and Counterpart International, is one of the Center’s projects. It featured organizations from all over the region involved with this initiative. According to María Augusta Mendoza, Human Talent Coordinator of Grupo Faro Ecuador, what motivated her to join was “the commitment of building the Latin American and the Caribbean Regional Center, identifying the role of the Civil Society and the strategic goals that this community wants to achieve, such as enabling enviroment, the CSOs sustainability, and transparency and accountability”.

As for the experience of working with different organizations simultaneously, Jonathan Diab, Program Officer of Innovation for Change, stressed that when organizing this kind of events and initiatives, “it’s crucial planning a lot of anticipation, since there is a large number of associates involved in it”. He added that he’s very grateful with the RACI Team for their hospitality. Likewise, María Augusta said that “there’s a great sense of teamwork, which is a great strength of the Network”.

This week of work in particular, “was a week that mixed workdays and cultural activities. This activities allowed the assistants to value their participation and, at the same time, strengthened the solidarity bonds, which are essential to improve the probabilities of success of this kind of events, that are mostly virtual”, highlighted Laura Pinzón, Communication and Public Advocacy Coordinator of Grupo Faro. Along the same line, Suhani Bhushan, Program Officer of Sustainable Development at CIVICUS, stressed that “The events were a success, and counted with the participation of people from all over Latin America and the Caribbean. With different activities, speakers, panels, and networking opportunities, everyone took away something this week”.

The Center’s next projects, Gerardo Torres told us, are “working in a training about enabling environment, continue with the webinar series, and keep making Innovation Labs at the local level. Additionally, a study about the impact of the Civil Society on the region will be carried out, and a General Assembly will be held this year, posibbly in Guatemala“.

Lastly, Suhani assured that “Buenos Aires was a great place to hold the event”. In the same way, everyone agreed that choosing Buenos Aires was the right decision, as it has many cultural and gastronomic offerings, and a rich history, which gave a unique context to the event. In this sense, Laura said that she “enjoyed of its cultural and historical places, as well as knowing very interesting people, and the processes that are taking place in the countries”.


RACI was host of the First Lab on Collaborative Economy in Buenos Aires

From June 6th to June 10th the first Lab of Innovation on Collaborative Economy took place in the city of Buenos Aires. The main exponents on Collaborative Economy met to address the most complex social, political and economical problems in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Innovación para el Cambio along with Argentine Network for International Cooperation (RACI) started a week-long workshop for Innovation  with a work day designed for the Strengthen of Capacities in Latin America and the Caribbean where members of Innovación para el Cambio, Counterpart International and Civicus took part.

During the week, social entrepreneurs from the region had joint work meetings to exchange innovative experiences towards the solution of the main problems affecting the region, such as: social mobility, pollution, equalitarian access to health attention, access to proper housing and funding for social projects.

As well, on June 9th the International Conference on Collaborative Cities was organized by RACI and Centro de Implementación de Políticas Públicas para la Equidad y el Crecimiento (CIPPEC) where renowned international specialists addressed different thematic concepts related to the relation between Collaborative Economy and Cities. In the event, the relation among disruptive business models supported by technological platforms and regulatory frameworks in Latin America were talked and discussed; in addition to consequences and opportunities for the sustained development of smart cities in the whole region.

A day later the workshop finished with the General Assembly of the Affinity Group of National Associations (AGNA). RACI, as a member of AGNA and the Principal Committee of the Network, received representatives of its member organizations from all over the world to start the Annual Assembly.  There was sharing of ideas and experiences of their works as networks of Civil Society and an identification of strategic priorities of AGNA for 2017 to 2022.