“People already give like he thinks he’s helping. ” “People buy things they don’t need.” “People only think of themselves.” Surely these three phrases are not foreign to you. You have even been able to pronounce them at some point in these last days, weeks or months, but what have you done to change it? That is the question asked by the NGO The South Face and its environmental project, Wild balance, with We are the people, a campaign that emphasizes the responsibility of each citizen to achieve true social change.
“We wanted it to be a critical and constructive wake-up call. It is necessary to rethink our individualism and ask ourselves what is in our hands to be part of the problem or the solution ”, Borja Juez, founder of The South Face, answers by phone from Bogotá.
The first action of the initiative, designed by the publicists Patri Pérez and Luis Di Lascio, was a posting of posters on October 11 in the main cities of the countries in which the organization works: Nairobi, Mogadishu, Barcelona, Madrid, Mexico City and Bogotá. The movement and actions have been followed through the social networks of the two organizations and through the hashtag in the different languages in which the campaign has been launched ―Spanish, Swahili, Somali, English and Catalan―: #somosagente #sisiniwatu #waxaannahaydadka #wearethepeople #somlagent
The pandemic, in addition to a global health challenge, has also been a historic moment in which to rethink what kind of society we want. “In Africa they talk about Ubuntu, the concept that ‘you are because I am’, and how we all need each other to move forward, something that with the pandemic is becoming clear that it is fundamental”, reflects Judge.
For years, The South Face has been fighting to Kenyan and Somali women have access to university studies. However, this year, due to the pandemic, it has been impossible for the organization to grant scholarships to any student. “With the campaign, we do not seek to teach good habits, or to support a specific project, but rather to rethink things, their why and how we intervene in them. Well, only by accepting our responsibility, we will be able to go from being the problem to being the solution ”, the organization decides in its manifesto.