Solidarity beyond charity…

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The world is losing the real meaning of solidarity caused by multiple crises that boost both feelings: will for being united and help others, and at the same time, the paranoia of losing what they have already gained.

It is important to remember that historically, solidarity has been associated with charity and not with steady action, through the public sector and a committed political sector. Solidarity becomes a game of “helping vulnerable people” and not “building empowerment”. As a consequence, there is not a circle of empowerment that reduces vulnerabilities and helps on the road to create resilience but the vicious circle in which more vulnerabilities create the idea of more sense of ownership from institutions “in charge of helping”. A true negative link, especially for the humanitarian sector. A wrong power that gets into unsustainable systems that develops mechanisms of selfishness to protect themselves and survive through financial and institutional crises. The axis of interest is around themselves within endless circles of self- empowerment instead of “releasing “others from being ”aid receivers” by delivering tools that transforms them into “producers”. All the countries that have overcome poverty have created their own systems of resilience based on empowering individuals, not institutions.

Climate change exposure that vulnerabilities are a matter of all human beings, not institutions that deliver solutions but a new normal for the planet in which the answer relies on innovative global structures instead of traditional ones.

Innovation, sense of joint action and creativity becomes key pillars to make of crises a new global order within the political sector as another more actor and not the only actor in delivering. There is a clear expectation that political institutions will tackle crises but it is just a partner that, in addition, is going through their own crisis.

The own exercise of solidarity has been identified as charity or as a goodwill attitude towards balanced international relations. Not as it should be: a well- analyzed and strategically focuses action within a system that is interconnected by holistic approaches. Multiple crises demand multiple actors, backgrounds and talents that make of solidarity a way of working not an attitude in specific situations of uncertainty. We are going through emergency as a new normal, not an exceptional situation.

Solidarity becomes, paradoxically, the enemy of politics and private interests searching for more freedom in terms of accountability and transparency. As a  reaction, isolationism and aggressive confrontation become new feelings that are guiding part of the world, cancelling any attempt for joint action.

 Is it a historical momentum for partnering with different people on innovative shapes, reformed institutions, and creative leaders.

A good collaborative attitude is not enough and together –all actors on stage- we must build a new concept based on innovation and carefully studied framework of action to make of current burdens and opportunity to gather people around a colorful scenario and not the grey nuances of a status quo that is not moving forward.

Gender equality action is one of the models that exposure failure at global solidarity level. United Nations has not achieved its goal for a 5th World Conference of Women Therefore, innovative institutions as the Women Economic Forum within their Mission Million 2022 -gathering 1 million women worldwide- aim to contribute to building sense of togetherness across the world by their own initiative. We see now the relevance of the civil society and the need to make them active actors of empowerment and not passive observers of institutional processes that are just not delivering.

A sense of solidarity must be an updated resource of the Government that works as a tool to empower citizens and at the same time, deliver tools that make the system a network of talents. Not as now that is it only part of community initiatives. The public sector is a representative of the people and is not there precisely to help people but to represent them in their needs. It is in that aspect that the public sector would become a Facilitator of processes in which all actors have a leadership role, not the disempowered feeling that citizens hold making of activism the only true resource for achieving changes. Reducing all to a political game and not an interconnected game of empowerment and togetherness. Vertical relationships institutions-citizens dominate the stage and not a system that helps individuals to build their own defenses and resilience from within. Contributing to their freedom by cutting the toxic link citizens- super powerful States. The contrary of what is supposed a Welfare State does not mean super powers but just public affairs that are focused on those issues that are above individuals, having as a main goal of their development.

Creating empowerment among citizens is what truly flourishes a Welfare system and not the transfer of responsibilities that transform the public sector into an axis of delivering policies, not actions or/and tools.Is it not necessary a libertarian position but a not updated concept of a democratic State that is able to face challenges through new perspectives and within the participation of all actors at equal level.

Together is the answer…let´s facilitate the process.

*Together by Lorenzo Quinn

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