We've all heard stories of the well-meaning government, INGO, student or diaspora group that tries to help a social movement in another country and inadvertently gets them into trouble with their own government, or does something to undermine the cause. At the same time, solidarity, support, collaboration on common injustices and practical help such as funding or training from activists, foundations, and even foreign governments is also a part of many stories of social movement success.
So, what are the impacts of outside support, and under what conditions does it help social movements? How can outsiders do better in supporting activists and working with social movements in other parts of the world?
Well, soon, we hope to know a lot more about that by asking activists in 12 countries what they think.
We've been working with Rhize – a global non-profit organization that helps catalytic leaders around the world build sustainable, active participation in the nonviolent social movements they lead – to design research that asks activists in 12 countries about their perspectives and experiences of support from groups outside their country.
We know that readers have broad and deep networks, so we'd love your help sharing with people you know who are engaged in nonviolent activism in the fight for a more equitable, inclusive, and democratic world in Colombia, Egypt, India, Kenya, Myanmar, Russia, Sudan, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, and Venezuela.
We are interested in the opinions of those active in social movements, community organizing, blogging, legal activism, investigative journalism, and nonviolent civil resistance. If you are an INGO staff member and you are not involved in social movements in these countries, this survey may not be for you. Basically, we want to hear from activists involved in social movements.
Survey links in 9 languages can be accessed at rhize.org/survey.
The purpose of the survey is to understand what activists and social movements need most, and how public and private organizations can be more helpful. The goal is to influence those organizations – including religious groups, governments, corporations, charities, and individuals – to provide more effective support to activists in the future.
This research is funded by the Atlantic Council and Open Society Foundation and undertaken by Rhize. Results from the survey will be made public and have a widespread audience, but identifying information will not be collected or shared – we are not collecting names, names of organisations, or retaining IP addresses. All responses will remain anonymous and confidential.
We are lucky to be working with a team of research coordinators - an activist taking the lead in getting the word out in each country - and we have translated the survey into a range of languages - see below for links to the survey in a range of languages or you can access them all to http://www.rhize.org/survey.
Take the survey in your language: