2015 has been an exciting, jam-packed year for Rhize. We're so happy to share with you all the exciting details below!
Uganda: A New Test of the Rhize Model
With the Ugandan presidential elections looming in February 2016, the Rhize Coaching Team worked with 15 incredible activists from across the country determined to make Uganda more peaceful and democratic. Two of our all-star Kenyan catalysts joined the workshop to begin training as coaches, and the training was co-led by an invaluable member of the Rhize Coaching Corps, former Otpor leader (from the Serbian revolution), Ivan Marovic. It was incredible to see experience from so many movements coming together and to continue to see the Ugandan team working diligently over the last few weeks to apply the Rhize concepts to their work ahead of this critical time in their country’s history.
Rhize Fellowship: Success!
After six months of intensive training and coaching, our catalysts have been impacting their communities, growing their networks, and Rhizing up in amazing ways. Just to refresh: In February, we launched the Rhize Catalysts Fellowship with a team of 10 coaches and 8 movements, led by 23 activists from Kenya, Philippines, Colombia, The Bahamas, The Gambia, Cyprus, Nigeria, and USA. The catalyst teams were paired with experienced coaches who guided, encouraged, and challenged them in skill-building, story sharing, and campaign planning. Many catalysts expressed that they are better able to articulate their positions, share ideas, and widen their networks.
"I really liked the peer interaction. Listening to other people’s stories was wonderful—It gives you knowledge. I remember one time we spoke, and I thought 'we aren’t the only ones doing something. There are others also fighting against injustice. Even within our own country.' We can see the global picture. This changed my perspective: There are a lot of people fighting." (Nigerian Catalyst)
Our fellows continue to be engaged in our work in multiple ways. We’re excited to tell you more over the next few weeks, so stay tuned!
Launching our Youth Empowerment Work
We're excited to be launching an important initiative that's examining the role of youth activists around the world in sparking and leading social movements. Over the next year, we'll be launching two studies looking at what types of support have made activists successful so that Rhize can ground our work in data-driven solutions. Through surveys and interviews with young people and the organizations engaging them, we'll be able to better assist activists' ability to create space for them to initiate, activate, and replicate systems for change.
These projects are building Rhize’s capacity, helping us create a true community of catalysts and partners working to change the way we do international development, and most importantly, will ensure Rhize is laying a strong, evidence-based approach to our work.
There’s more from Rhize on the way and we’re looking forward to continuing to lay the groundwork for an even more successful 2016. We’re glad to have you on this journey.
-Erin and the team at Rhize
P.S. As the holidays draw near, give the gift of Rhize and support our growing efforts into 2016.