The Zero Extreme Poverty 2030 (ZEP2030) coalition successfully convened its 6th General Assembly (GA) with the theme “Creating A Better Normal Towards Sustainable Communities“. More than 140 development actors from at least 69 member and partner organizations participated in the virtual gathering held on November 26, 2021.
This year’s GA featured two keynote speakers: Patricia “Patreng” Non, Founder of the Maginhawa Community Pantry, talked about how the initiative sparked a movement of 6,700 community pantries across the Philippines. The community pantries inspired volunteerism and mutual aid and promoted a culture of hope and dignity amid the pandemic. The second keynote was given by Roberto “Ka Dodoy” Ballon, one of the recipients of the 2021 Ramon Magsaysay Awards, and Founder and Chairperson of Kapunungan sa Gagmayng Mangingisda sa Concepcion (KGMC) in Zamboanga Sibugay. Ka Dodoy shared their community’s journey in reviving the fishing industry and working together towards sustainable livelihood and marine environment. Ka Dodoy stressed the value of innovation and multi-sectoral collaboration in poverty reduction and likened their marine habitat to one big community pantry, wherein each person takes according to one’s need and gives according to one’s capacity.
Other highlights of the GA included snippets of the four learning sessions that were conducted by ZEP2030 in the lead-up to the GA proper; a summary of the progress of the coalition and the local convergences; and the launch of the ZEP2030 Toolkit: A Guide for Local Convergences.
The Toolkit is a living document that builds on the collective insights and practices of coalition members and local convenors. It offers a rich menu of tools and relevant resources, and encourages peer exchange as ZEP2030 continues to grow and support more local convergences. In his closing message, Br. Armin Luistro FSC, Chair of ZEP2030, reiterated his call to coalition members to go local and look for solutions on the ground, and to re-create inspiring stories such as those from Patreng and Ka Dodoy.
The Toolkit is available on the ZEP2030 website: http://zeropovertyph.net/zep2030-ph-toolkit/. Information about each local convergence such as poverty profile and convergence members may also be accessed on the website: http://zeropovertyph.net/.
To watch the full replays of the GA and the learning sessions, visit the ZEP2030 Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ZeroExtremePoverty2030.