bannerp

Context and objectives of the Program
 

History teaches us that a true democracy is only possible to the extent that citizens involve themselves and participate directly and actively in the social, political, and economic life of a nation. Despite some advances since the signing of the Peace Accords (1996), the exclusion of community and grassroots organizations in the consolidation of democracy in Guatemala continues to be very marked and evident. The only way to reverse this tendency is the process of empowerment in terms of skills and competencies involving the aforementioned actors, as well as the creation of networks, synergy, and collaborations between them, so that comprehensive, participatory, and sustainable rural development can be achieved.

Opportunities for an organized civil society to strengthen its knowledge and stay up-to-date in order to develop its initiatives according to best practices are really quite scarce in Guatemala.

Public education teaches citizens in a very limited way about these topics, while specialized education for the civil society generally requires organizations to obtain support from international NGOs or to pay very high prices (totally out of the range of economic possibility for small community groups) in order to attend certification programs and/or Master’s courses. Additionally, almost all capacity building and institutional strengthening opportunities are held in the capital, which implies a distance that is too large and costs that are too high for practically all institutions located in remote areas.

In a context as socially, culturally, and historically heterogeneous as that of Guatemala, we believe that community organizations are the actors that best and most deeply understand the specific needs and the social priorities of their people. For this reason, EntreMundos, through this program, offers support that consolidates the abilities and competencies of the local Guatemalan organizations, empowering them toward programs that contribute to the sustainable development of the country and transforming them at the same time into multiplier agents and key actors in order to achieve positive development that is as much internal (within the institution itself) as it is for the organization’s beneficiary communities.

With this support, we aspire to create a network of organizations that:
  • has the fundamental and indispensable tools for being able to face the problems of poverty, marginalization, and exclusion that are present in the country;
  • can operate on a local level (rural development) and nationally (political advocacy) to improve the living conditions of civil society, principally in rural areas;
  • shares its experiences and methodologies of work with other social realities of Guatemala.

Since our founding, we have worked with more than 500 rural development organizations and grassroots groups from 20 of the 22 departments in the country. Analyzing our trajectory over the last three years, it is clear that EntreMundos is increasingly recognized nationally as a leader and a reference point for NGOs and community groups throughout Guatemala. Further, it has a database in which more than 700 organizations are registered!!!

The method for choosing topics for the Community Capacity Building Program is totally participatory and is carried out as follows. At the beginning of each year, EntreMundos sends all of the organizations in its database a Participatory Diagnostic Form, in which they express their needs and requests, suggesting topics to prioritize, workshops to repeat and/or present in more depth, and workshops to create. Afterwards, the EntreMundos team organizes all of the information they have received and begins the next phase: planning and defining activities, searching for appropriate facilitators/instructors for each topic, preparing and sending invitations, carrying out the educational activities, and estimating their institutional and social impact with the ASAME (Accompaniment, Follow-up, Consultation, Monitoring, and Evaluation) method.

Since the beginning of 2015, EntreMundos began a successful process of modernizing and improving teaching methods for the Community Capacity Building Program, through innovative methods such as online platforms, webinars, and other virtual tools.

Finally, it should be mentioned that, systemically across our programs, a lot of importance is given to female participation and encouraging and favoring the presence of women (teenagers, youths, and adults) in all of our educational activities. In the same way, we push for policies and strategies for gender equality within all of the institutions that participate in EntreMundos activities, making them aware of the importance of the role of women in achieving sustainable development on a community, municipal, and national level. In the past three years, more than 60% of the people who attended the Community Capacity Building program have been female.

EntreMundos´ Capacity Building Workshop Programme provides staff members from development and human rights organisations with access to high-quality, low-cost capacity building workshops specifically focused on successfully managing non-governmental organisations and implementing effective development projects and programmes.

The Need: Strong organisational management and effective project planning and administration are essential components for anynon-governmental organisation striving to improve social, economic, political or environmental issues. There are very limited opportunities to develop such skills in Guatemala, since formal education tends to prepare students either for the business world or for a role within the government.

 

Due to the demonstrated and immediate need for building capacities amongst these organizations, EntreMundos has created a region-wide reputation for itself as a leading source of organizational development assistance.

The themes for our yearly series workshops are decided through a participatory planning process that allows our partner organisations to express to us their current training needs.

Based on the results of this diagnostic, we plan a series of workshops that best reflect these needs.

 

 

Previous themes have included:

  • Diagnostics and Strategic Planning
  • Project planning
  • Project evaluation and monitoring
  • Fundraising Strategies
  • Strategies for Gender Justice
  • Management of Economic Development Projects
  • Institutional Strengthening
  • Volunteer Management
  • Defence and Promotion of Human Rights
  • Political Participation

The workshops we organise are facilitated by Guatemalan development professionals, well-respected in their particular fields of expertise, and have covered a wide range of themes including organisational governance and management; strategic planning; project planning and management; fundraising and volunteer management.
Some of our facilitators:

Dr Walter Hillerman is a university professor and a consultant for Desarrollo Humano e Institucional (APDHI).  He has more than 30 years e1perience as a business and organizations consultant and hashelped institutions foundations and local NGOs with the organizational strengthening, and project  planning,evaluation and monitoring. He has worked as a facilitator for EntreMundos for 5 years, specializing in project planning subjects. 

 

 

 

Licenciada Patricia Ardon has been working with social movements in Central America for 30 years.  She is a founding member of Just Asociates (JASS) and founder/director of Sinergia N’oj, a Guatemala NGP that provides training in leadership and political participation to young people, indigenous leaders, female leaders and social movements. She has facilitated our Political Participation workshop. 

 

 

 


Licenciado Guilllermo Cifuentes is Executive Director of Asociacion de Desarrollo Agricola y Micro-Empresarial (ADAM), and is responsible for relationships with international funders such as Oxfam and European Union. He has participated in NGO activities in many countries including El Salvador, Colombia, Germany and Japan. Guillermo has facilitated several workshops on fundraising strategy. 

 

 

 

Licenciada Anantonia Reyes Prado is an anthropologist with several masters degrees in Human Rights. She has more than 20 years experience in the human rights field working in several different countries and with many different organizations. Currently she works for the Guatemalan Human Rights Ombudsman and is a member of the Advisory Commitee on Human Rights for the United Nations. Anantonia has facilitated the Diploma course in Defense and Promotion of Human Rights

 

 

 

Dr Dennis Rodas holds a Doctorate in Economics and is a university professor with over 16 years experience. He specializes in business management themes such as productivity and entreprenuership.

As a consultant he has worked with many national and international organizaitons and instituations such as BID, FOMIN and World Bank. Dennis has facilitated the workshop in Managment of Local Economic Development Projects. 
 
This Program, which EntreMundos has run since 2010, aims to help rural groups strengthen and improve their sustainable community tourism projects.
The principal goal is for local communities to be competent and capable of taking charge of their tourism projects without external help or financial support. This goal anticipates a process of accompaniment and institutional strengthening that offers an alternative source of income for rural areas that depend solely on agriculture, preserving natural resources while allowing tourists to appreciate their natural environment, culture, ancestral knowledge, and lifestyle.  
36 Programa de Turismo Comunitario

  

 

 

 

 

 

  
 

Thanks to this sector of our Community Tourism Program, EntreMundos offers technical and methodological accompaniment to consolidate the principal axes of work that are necessary to improve a tourism project, such as:

  • Empowerment of each member of the project with respect to the mission/vision/axes of work of each organization;
  • Involvement of the Board of Directors and of the different Commissions (of Tourism, Administration, Marketing, Social Participation and Advocacy,.....);
  • Respect for the organization’s structure and its practical function;
  • Internal regulation and its application in practice, correction of a few articles;
  • Completion of activities according to the activities’ timetable (meetings, tabulation of data, presentation of reports), limitations and lessons learned;
  • Internal controls: of reservations, of funds, of specific shifts for each job and the borrowing of equipment, as well as the proper use of tools, functionality, restrictions, and rectification;
  • List of current products and services and up-to-date catalog of services;
  • List of prices for the final or direct client and prices for a wholesaler or tour operator;
  • Acceptance of the new prices on the part of the clients and management of different price lists;
  • Diagram of the food supply service and updating of menus; compliance with agreements, maintenance of quality and quantity of the food service, visitors’ acceptance and comments;
  • Client profile and marketing plan, which includes punctual actions for the distribution of printed materials, digital marketing and strategic alliances; evaluation of results through comments on feedback flyers and personal conversations with visitors;
  • Creation of profiles on social networks and web pages; evaluation of results according to the increase in number of visitors to the website; internal organization and lessons learned to improve the administration and management of web resources;
  • Gender policy, its implementation, acceptance, compliance, and limitations;
  • Flyers for feedback and evaluation of the service in Spanish and English; appropriate use, effectiveness, reports about service and correction, marketing actions and their continuous use, database;
  • List of immediate actions to improve the service and raise quality; how the implementation of actions to improve service has brought positive results.
 
For more information about our Community Tourism Program: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In August 2007, EntreMundos received a donation of 10 computers from an Oregon-based non-profit, Partners in Solidarity. These 10 computers marked the start of the realisation of our IT Resources and Training Centre. Through this Centre, EntreMundos has been able to provide development organisations with a series of IT Skills Training Courses on various computer programmes, covering users with all levels of ability: from those who have never used a computer before to those who are already competent computer users and require more specific training.

 

 

The aim of our IT Skills Training Programme is to build the IT abilities of staff members of development organisations so that they are able to use information technology to improve the management of their organisations and programmes in order to achieve their own development objectives. In particular, we aim to further develop organisations´ communication and administrative skills, enhance their online visibility and improve their abilities to seek out and secure funding.

 

 

In 2012, thanks to the generous support of our partners the Planet Wheeler Foundation we were able to buy 10 brand new computers, marking an important next step for this vital programme. With these new computers we will be able to enhance the variety of the courses that we offer, as they have the capacity to run many more programmes than our previous computers. As a result, we aim to offer courses in areas such as website design and maintenance, online fundraising and the use of project planning and accounting software.

 
This paragraph summarizes the methodological manuals and guides that are specifically for organizations and groups that work in the field of rural development and the defense of human rights.
 
They have been grouped into six different topics:
 
  • 1)  Project Cycle Management (General)

  • 2)  Planning and Management of Projects in Specific Sectors

  • 3)  Political Advocacy, Awareness Raising, and Defense/Advancement

  • 4)  Management and Administration of Nonprofit Organization

  • 5)  Fundraising

  • 6)  Information Technology Skills

The majority of these documents have been used as teaching and training tools in our certification programs, courses, and workshops: it is EntreMundos’ pleasure to share them, to facilitate a flow of knowledge and an exchange of experiences, and to promote personal, institutional, and community growth.

If you know of and keep up with other capacity building material that has been particularly useful for you and/or your organization, please let us know by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so we can add it to the current list.
 

Project Cycle Management (General)

 

Planning and Management of Projects in Specific Sectors

Political Advocacy, Awareness Raising, and Defense/Advancement

Management and Administration of Nonprofit Organization

Fundraising 

 

Videos EM