From July 18-July 29, I worked with Fundación Origen in Mexico City, a foundation that offers human and economic development programs to break the cycle of violence and poverty in Mexico. During these two weeks, I helped organize the inventory, including artisanal products the women make; I built an extensive excel spreadsheet; and I visited one of the Community Centers (Villa Victoria). The Community Development Centers offer different services for women, their families, and their communities. The foundation seeks to develop women’s self-esteem, security, and confidence in themselves and in their abilities; they promote the development of productive activities, training for self-employment, and decent work so that women can generate income to improve their living conditions. This Center supports 2,500 women and their families annually. It has a sewing and embroidery workshop, a cooking workshop, a tea-making workshop, a computer workshop, a multi-purpose room, a playroom, and offices. When I visited the Center, I saw first-hand how the women master the skills that Origen teaches them and saw them make produce. After making their produce, the women send it back to the foundation which sells it, and all the profits go back to the women who make it.
Through this experience, I learned that even though some women don’t have the same opportunities, they will try their best to improve their living situation. Also, I learned that with the help of this foundation they can make a living while still going through courses in self-esteem confidence and self-love. One of the most important things that this foundation has accomplished is that instead of just donating money to these women, they invest in courses to help them to generate their own money. As well, I like how they invest in their mental health and well-being to break the cycle of violence that their family has gone through. I like that this foundation helps these women through programs that benefits them in the long-term.
-Valentina Williamson ’23