“There is much that The United States has to offer El Salvador, but there is just as much that El Salvador has to offer the United States. Together, we can develop the approach that will be needed to assure that the economic, social, and political futures of both El Salvador and the United States are humane and progressive.” –Archbishop Oscar Romero
SHARE’s Model of Mutual Accompaniment
As an organization of international solidarity, SHARE recognizes that it is not our role to enter into communities, identify problems, and define and finance solutions. Instead, it is the people and communities living the cycles of injustice and oppression that need to lead the long-term efforts for structural change. Our role is to support the empowerment of and walk in solidarity with these communities, organizations, and individuals. This is called mutual accompaniment.
SHARE’s Three Pillars of Accompaniment
- Physical, Spiritual, and Moral Accompaniment: Building lasting relationships between communities in El Salvador and the United States by creating opportunities for them to share experiences, joys, and struggles. Join SHARE on a delegation or host a tour.
- Advocacy Accompaniment: Advocating for US policies and supporting Salvadoran advocacy efforts that promote respect for human rights and sustainable solutions to poverty and rural development. Begin doing this by joining our eNewsletter list to get action alerts.
- Financial Accompaniment: Supporting communities as they seek sustainable alternatives to poverty and just rural development. Help SHARE do this by making a donation today.
Structural Change and Organized Communities
SHARE is not a charity organization. We are a justice organization. We do not accompany Salvadoran communities simply because they are poor. We accompany Salvadoran communities because they are organized, they are forging visionary solutions to change the structures that keep people poor, and they are working to replace them with sustainable and justice-based community development.
Supporting the empowerment of people to find their voices and participate in decision-making about the future of their communities and country is an important step in creating change. When communities are organized and all people, including youth and women, are able to participate and analyze their situation, they can define the projects, initiatives and public policies that will benefit their community and together oppose those that will harm them. When children, youth, women, and men participate and have ownership over initiatives and decisions, changes become increasingly sustainable and systemic.
One easy way to think about it is:
Organizing + Empowerment= Citizen Participation
Citizen Participation + Financial Accompaniment = Structural Change
Active, organized citizens supported by technical assistance and economic management skills are able to work together for structural change.