CoDev Endowment Fund

Codev LogoThe CoDev Endowment Fund was established to support the work of CoDevelopment Canada, building partnerships for global justice.

CoDevelopment Canada is a BC-based NGO that works for social change and global education in the Americas. Founded in 1985 by a group of activists who wanted to go beyond simply sending financial aid to Latin American countries, we believe that partnerships between like-minded organizations in Canada and Latin America can be vehicles for learning, social change, and community empowerment.

CoDev mobilizes Canadians and particularly Western Canadians to work with the people of Latin America for a fairer world. CoDev does this by fostering partnerships between civil society groups in Canada, and particularly British Columbia, and their counterparts in Latin America. These partnerships educate Canadians about Latin America and allow them to directly support the region. Such connections build solidarity, mutual understanding and ultimately improve prospects for a fairer global order.

Codev's Approach to International Development

CoDev combines a unique approach with a depth of knowledge and experience. CoDev was born out of the acknowledgment that Canada shares both a continent and a common history with Latin America. The struggles of people in Latin America parallel the struggles that Canadians face. Underlying our approach to international development is a commitment to the following methods:

  • Empowering Women Promotion of gender equality is a priority in all of CoDev's programs. Women's empowerment is the main focus of our maquila solidarity work, a strong part of our work with teachers, and the target of many of our community-led development programs. By promoting more equitable gender relations and providing women with the tools they need, CoDev is strengthening Latin American civil society at its very core. More than 50% of CoDev's Latin American partners are women's organizations or committees.
  • Fostering Canadian-Latin American Partnerships CoDev's partnership model has received international acclaim. We facilitate relationships between Canadian and Latin American organizations that share a commitment to workers' rights, community development and women's rights. We keep both parties informed of each other's struggles and successes, organize visits, and promote learning, dialogue and collaboration. Partnerships make global solidarity real for both parties.
  • Strengthening Civil Society For almost 30 years, Latin America has changed from a region characterized by authoritarian national-security states to one characterized by democracies and a growing private business sector. We support Latin American organizations in mobilizing members to promote and defend their rights in this new political climate. CoDev helps organizations involve disenfranchised groups in local decision making processes, develop policy, and effectively lobby both the public and private sector.

Codev's Program Areas:

Codev Work
CoDev's partner NOMADESC (Association for Research and Social Action) in Colombia focuses on human rights education and defense initiatives with unions, indigenous and Afro-descendent communities in Colombia.
  • Human Rights: Strengthening Grassroots Community-Led Development  CoDev supports grassroots community groups working to improve people's health and social well-being. Our partners enable local people to find their own solutions for improving their communities. All of our community-led development projects are initiated and designed by the communities themselves, enabling local people to find their own solutions for improving their communities.
  • Education Rights: Building Solidarity for Public Education CoDev's partners improve public education by increasing gender equity, both in the classroom and in education unions; developing participatory classroom teaching practices; and promoting public input into policy creation.

    Three specific objectives aim towards this goal:  to increase participation and representation of women in teaching unions; to promote inclusive and participatory classroom teaching practices; and to promote the participation of civil society in the improvement of public education.

    CoDev also supports the development of the Non-Sexist teaching approach in Central America, which includes the development of learning materials and teachers' guides and the training of Non-Sexist Pedagogy promoters selected by CoDev's teacher organization partners in Central America.
Labour Rights March
CoDev supports MEC's (Maria Elena Cuadra Movement of Employed and Unemployed Women) work in Nicaragua for the legal defense of maquila (factory) workers.
  • Labour Rights: Women Maquila Workers  CoDev supports solidarity between trade unions and local groups working for social justice in sweatshops. CoDev's partners educate and empower workers in their struggle to protect their labour rights.  The maquila garment-assembly industry in Central America has boomed since the early 1980s, creating a large number of desperately needed jobs in the region. Unfortunately, factory conditions and worker wages are abysmal, meaning social injustice for the labour force, 80% of whom are women who live in poverty. In this program area, CoDev supports women's groups whose aim is to educate and empower workers.
  • Public Engagement: Involving Canadians  CoDev helps Canadians understand their connections to global issues and the challenges of our partners in Latin America. Our annual film festival, curriculum resource production, and public speaking tours focus on key development issues. Through seminars, tours and presentations with our Canadian partners, CoDev raises awareness about our Latin American partners' struggles and successes.

    Involving Canadians is a key component of CoDev's partnership model. CoDev works especially closely with its Canadian partners, sharing information from their Latin American partners and providing education on development and social justice.
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