The PaMoja Project is a social and politically minded endeavour that accompanies NGOs, institutions, and communities working to advance community led social and political change through civic action and solidarity building.
We believe that there is no such thing as the powerless. Like the civil rights activists Ella Baker, we believe that “strong people do not need strong leaders”. All peoples are intrinsically powerful and our work aims to co-create space for the deepening and expansion of that power. We do not believe that communities are voiceless. We believe that as the writer Arundhati Roy says, “there are only the deliberately silenced, or the preferably unheard”. We are here to support the magnification of the voices that matter. It is from these standpoints that we engage our work.
Our focus and approach emerged out of consistent encounters with the limits of electoral democracy, top down policy, and conventional approaches to “development” that frame peoples and communities as objects to be improved and worked upon.We work at these limits by promoting new thinking, action, approaches and policy. We bring our cumulative strengths, experience, and insight to the table as equal co-conspirators in transformative processes. As a project, we are consistently refining, revising, and rethinking our approach to accompaniment. We root our approach to working with clients, communities, and citizens in liberatory and decolonizing traditions. We are a project because learning to work in this way requires constant reflection, reflexivity, and a willingness to be challenged and changed by our encounters with the peoples we work with and the places we work within. We aim to walk behind and beside not in front or ahead. We do not preach, teach, or direct. Instead, we accompany and co-conspire.
Accompany & co-conspire
Our approach to working with peoples, communities, and organizations reflect our core values. We use accompaniment and conspiring because these words are containers for a number of key engagement principles we utilize and apply to all of our work: