Part 2: We interviewed the winners of COVID 19 Emergency Fund

We present the second edition of the series of interviews to the winners of COVID 19 Emergency Fund – Latin America and the Caribbean. Keep on reading to meet them! 

As part of the Covid-19 Emergency Fund for Latin America and the Caribbean, 15 organizations received up to US$5,000 to develop their projects. The projects were sought to contribute to protecting public space with innovative initiatives, creatively addressing the community challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Here are some of the answers we received! 

What did it mean for your organization to be a beneficiary of the Fund? How do you think it strengthened your institution? 

According to PODER, “The challenge we set out to address in this project was to turn available key information about those relevant companies and institutions, for people and organizations in communities whose rights were violated by companies and megaprojects. With the pandemic, transparency and access to information have become difficult, especially in marginalized and vulnerable communities: public information gatherings have suffered delays and cancellations, and requests for information in government agencies have been postponed. At PODER, we have tried to restructure our activities with communities, reinforcing online activities, providing communication equipment, and structuring field activities taking into account health protocols.”

Elena Arengo, Co-Director of PODER (Mexico)

Editor’s Note: Visit their website.

Could you mention three positive changes that the project has produced and that are sustainable over time? 

For Chile Transparente, the positive changes were:

“1. Creation of a website that will allow permanent contact with citizens, in order to receive complaints on irregularities of municipal procurement and to generate training workshops for local leaders in the field. 

  1. Experience in working with the community. 
  2. Acquisition of new knowledge in public procurement, bidding processes, main associated risks, etc.” 

Tania Tabilo Morales,  Coordinator of the Anti-Corruption Legal Assistance Office of Chile Transparente (Chile).

Editor’s Note: Visit their website  “Caza Chanchullos” here.

What was the challenge you wanted to face with this project? To what extent did it worsen with the advent of the pandemic? What did you and your organization propose to solve it?

For Fundación León, “the main challenge was the application of a project that involved an almost 90% remote implementation, the face-to-face instances were few and reduced in number of participants. The main test was to generate ties, networks and active participation in all virtual instances. On the one hand, a challenge that we considered an obstacle ended up enabled us, for example, in the case of training for municipalities, to involve more municipal officials from different areas and units, since they had to connect from their offices with their teams.”

Federico Diaz Marino, Program Director of Fundación León (Argentina)

Editor’s Note: Visit their website.

Could you share a brief quote from the direct beneficiaries of the Project regarding what it meant to be a participant in it? 

Get to know the experience of the direct beneficiaries of the project developed by FACILITAR (Colombia)! 

“Like my colleagues, I think that being part of this project was one of the most rewarding experiences we have been able to have, because through these workshops, I was able to learn a little more about some topics in terms of politics, leadership and journalism; thus expanding in a very pleasant and constructive way my knowledge and I am fully sure that my colleagues’ knowledge was also enriched. I feel very satisfied since through these workshops, many talents and personal qualities that I did not know were made known, as well as talents and qualities of many of the young people who participated in the municipality, both guests and attendees to the project. Therefore being this project a window for all those young people who have an aspiration and who have a born talent that deserves to be known and exploited, this project became, in a certain way, a range of possibilities for new workshops and projects of equal magnitude that promote progress and improvement of some young people within the municipality. We are hoping that the mayor’s office will continue to promote and carry out this type of project, but with a slightly broader intensity in order to promote new perspectives of life and personal development of young people in the municipality.” 

Att: Richard Antonio Araujo Ortiz, (Young participant from the municipality of San Cristóbal)


As a young person I wasn’t interested

In knowing anything about governance

But this project awoke in me

To have judgement and temperance 

Governments must be transparent

Let us see their works and their actions

And never hide between their teeth

What their true expenses are

Now more awake I feel

With leadership and with a clear mind

Thanks to RACI and its financing

In this project that I acclaim

Covid did not stop us with its evils

To receive good training

With interviews on radio programs

and the communication workshop”

Att: Claudia Toro (Corporación Facilitar)

Editor’s Note: Visit their website.