From to Tunisia to Egypt to Senegal, African social movements are reclaiming their political space. As people demonstrated – and celebrated – in the streets of Cairo, thousands of participants gathered for the World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal. The final declaration recently published in Via Campesina’s website offers a snapshot of the political agenda for years ahead, including:
- Massive gatherings such as the World Social Forum, which started in Porto Alegre, Brazil in 2001, are still very relevant to social movements. After 10 years, these events contribute to the global change moments and create spaces of learning and solidarity.
- Growing political convergence of social movements demand climate justice, call to end violence against women, and seek to defend the commons (water, land, information, internet, public spaces, etc).
- Defense of our common future requires a paradigm change. Echoing the voices of indigenous people around the world, social movements meeting in Africa demand a systemic change from wasteful consumption and greed to sustainable use of resources. The concept of el buen vivir (or living well) serves as a guiding principle of the new generation of social movements.
Grassroots International joined social movements around the world in Dakar for the World Social Forum, and we look forward to new initiatives towards a more just and sustainable future. Click here to read the Final Declaration of the Social Movements Assembly, WSF 2011, Dakar, Senegal.