An open letter to WINGS members on local practices and discourse and philanthropy

kuttab_250Dear WINGS members,

As the world becomes more interdependent, global philanthropy continues to grow to contribute in tackling global issues. More than that, there is increased consciousness that the cultural and social problems that societies face, and that philanthropy needs to address, are complex and global.

As a result, there is more awareness that solutions must be multidisciplinary and rooted in the local culture and values, rather than copied blindly from other regions.

I have been connecting with peers and colleagues to jointly work towards gaining a better understanding of local practices and discourse and philanthropy, bringing awareness of the need to reveal trends and document stories, old and new, from all regions of the world, in the effort to create a truly global philanthropy enriched with its diversity. Hopefully this will contribute to reinvent local discourses and reinvigorate local and global philanthropy.

The WINGS network has been very resourceful to my endeavor; it is where I can access many perspectives by tapping the minds and experiences of various member organizations.

I would like to invite you to read and comment on the learning from my recent visit to Colombia, where jointly with the AFE we conducted 4 focus groups. In the coming twelve months, I will hold similar consultations in the Arab Region, various countries in Europe, Africa, and China (possibly also other locations as time and opportunities permit).

I will keep you posted as this work develops and look forward to hearing your comments.

Atallah Kuttab

AFE held four focus group discussions from 19 to 22 August in the four largest Colombian cities: Bogota, Barranquilla, Cali and Medellin. The purpose was to reflect upon the challenges in private social investment and philanthropy. This is part of a wider study in Latin America covering Colombia, Brazil and Argentina. Atallah Kuttab and Maria Carolina Suarez (AFE) shared key impressions ahead of a more detailed report, here.

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