A glance at the workshop “Data for advocacy”

By Andrea Avilez.
?Mexico City, Mexico

Get to ACT! 2030 was a coincidence but it was an important one. From October 6 to 8 2017, a group of young people interested in issues related to sexual and reproductive rights, HIV, sexuality, research and advocacy were gather by ACT! 2030 Mexico to attend the workshop “Data for advocacy”.

Now it is the memory of an experience that was full of new information and new learning, which continues to transcend my day to day, as the acquired knowledge has been very useful for my research and advocacy work.

The central idea that I take away from that hard work weekend is the relevance of having data that allow us to have evidence for political advocacy. In that sense, for me the presentations that were given on international instruments that have taken into account the issues of interest were very important because they are a fundamental tool for advocacy.

Specifically, for my work within Fundaci?n Arco?ris por el respeto a la diversidad sexual, knowing the Montevideo Consensus, a document considered the most progressive by the discussions that the feminist movement placed on its agenda, is relevant to the advocacy work related to gender and sexuality. In this regard, I emphasize the specific importance of the priority measure 36 of the operational guide which states: ?Design policies and programs to eradicate discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the exercise of sexual rights and the manifestations thereof?.

On the other hand, given that I am in the research area of Fundaci?n Arco?ris, knowing how to develop a research protocol that aims to obtain data for advocacy is relevant and this was my favorite part of the workshop. Doing
research is something that I’m passionate about, however, we often don?t know what to do with the results we get. Now, after the workshop, I consider that one of the aims of research is political advocacy and management
since in this way research contributes to social transformation.

By teams we were working, throughout the workshop, a research protocol. I believe that this activity was very practical and allowed me to meet and collaborate with other organizations. Besides, it was very fun, it was
enriching since, at the same time that the theory was heard, we were applying it in our proposal in such a way that we were able to write a problem definition, an objective, the rationale and we began to carry out a
questionnaire and the guide for a semi-structured interview.

Finally, I would like to mention that the mainstreaming of the youth perspective was interesting and I find it very important since we tend to be a population that is little listened to and taken into account in decision-making processes. Working with young people and for young people is very valuable because now we have to talk and be heard.

Thanks ACT! 2030 for this experience!

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