A new stage, a new dimension begins in the Secretariat with three people in the team focused on taking Ripess towards new horizons in tune with the current great momentum that the Social Solidarity Economy is experiencing internationally. It is the union of these three women that will bring the tireless work that Ripess has been doing for the past 25 years, hand in hand with grassroots collectives, to be recognized worldwide with the imminent UN declaration on Social Solidarity Economy and Decent Work.

The team, with Andrea Echeverría in charge of giving impetus and dynamism to internal and external communication since June 2022, has been renewed this month with Aicha Belassir, the new executive secretary in the management tasks; and Sandra Moreno supporting advocacy and as project manager.

The latter, an activist for years (and currently) for food sovereignty with an emphasis on the rights of peasants and women, was actively involved in promoting the UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants. Sandra starts this adventure at Ripess with great emotion, having the possibility to contribute to the promotion of an authentic economy based on solidarity and the radical transformation of social relations through creative and critical thinking and action. This concept changes the paradigm and leads us to the development of political, social and economic spheres centred on the development of human beings in harmony with their natural environment’.

For her part, Aicha Belassir comes from fighting for the labour and social inclusion of people in vulnerable situations; as well as for gender equality and the achievement of Agenda 2030 as an Advisor in the Sustainable Development Council (in the Spanish Ministry of Social Rights and Agenda 2030), and as a representative in the Social Inclusion Network (of the Spanish Ministry of Labour and Social Economy).

After his experience at local, national and European level, he moves towards the international level with a backpack full of knowledge and experience, and the firm conviction to ‘Consolidate the political advocacy carried out so far by Ripess, making visible the importance of the Social Solidarity Economy at all levels and towards all actors, as well as strengthening our networks in the different territories, without forgetting our grassroots’.

Until 2021 it was Laure Jongeans, together with her team, who led Ripess to new horizons and strengthened communication and intercontinental synergies. Then, thanks to the continued good, careful and well-organised work of Stèphanie Barrial, solid foundations were laid for the continuation of the strategy initiated since 2021 with the Strategic Plan without which it would not be possible to have the current secretariat since February 2023.

Aicha, Sandra and Andrea will be able to bring together their knowledge and previous learning to present Ripess as it is: the most experienced and widespread organisation in support of the Social Solidarity Economy in the world. An organisation that represents what the social solidarity economy truly is: grassroots values, solidarity, respect for people and the planet, feminist, open, empathetic and diverse.