SSE grassroots networks and their members across all continents are playing a key role in overcoming the Covid19 challenges and showing their resilience and capacity to innovate. The challenge we are now facing is not how to build back pre-Covid socioeconomic structures, but rather how to build an alternative model of development, driven by the needs of all peoples and communities around the world, and the protection of our planet.
The window of opportunity is now open to accelerate the process, capitalize on the thousands of ingenious solutions being created within communities, and make positive change permanent and global in all its diversity, based on human rights and social, environmental, and economic justice.
At the same time, we must develop and strengthen SSE ecosystems at all levels, building on what already exists.
To this end, RIPESS intercontinental network is moving forward. We have adopted a new, more robust form of international coordination and strategic plan for the 2021-2023 period. This plan takes into account both the context, as well as the priorities, needs and visions of the different SSE continental and sectorial member networks.
The two main strategic orientations that have been adopted and around which the new strategy will be implemented, focus on aspects that will add value to the work of our member networks, while also ensuring transformative impacts on the regional and global arena. These two priorities are the following:
- Strengthen our international advocacy work from the local to the global levels to ensure more visibility of the solutions provided by SSE initiatives and networks, and thus realizing more transformative impacts.
- Support the strengthening of our subregional SSE networks’ work in their subregional advocacy activities, and their work with their national and local SSE network members.
More concretely, this means that:
- RIPESS will play a greater and more systematic role in promoting SSE in different international platforms and arenas in which many key stakeholders participate, like States, UN agencies, Universities, International networks and platforms, and other social movements. These platforms can be thematic (environment, SDGs, local development …), sectorial (food sovereignty, social protection, ethical finances …), and/or focused on certain groups (youth, women, migrants, informal workers, Indigenous People …).
- It also means supporting and promoting subregional and continental advocacy work for SSE, as each subregion has its own specificities and diversity, as well as key stakeholders to address regarding thematic, sectorial, and specific groups’ challenges.
- In parallel, at the local level, it is essential to support the promotion of SSE towards local governments, through reinforcing the support from the continental SSE networks towards their national members. At the same time enhance the sharing of advocacy tools and strategies between different countries from the different continents, in a spirit of joint construction of SSE public policies and programs between SSE actors and local governments.
- Added to that, make sure we develop more alliances with other transformative economies and civil society movements, as well as with any other multi stakeholders’ platforms with transformative vision, in order to join forces and get more impact in our advocacy actions.
- And finally, ensure we give visibility to grassroots SSE work from all over the world, as well as to the national SSE networks’ actions; and allow exchanges of experiences and tools between the SSE actors and between the networks, to contribute in reinforcing and disseminating these practices and innovations, including from specific groups (women, youth, informal sector, indigenous people, etc.).
This new period strategy is ambitious, with limited and weakened capacities due to the current crisis itself. But we believe all these actions are needed to be carried out in parallel, and should progressively be reinforced, considering the urgent need for a real and profound systemic transformation. We are convinced that SSE and related transformative economies offer solutions that should urgently be considered, empowered, and supported.