WEA’s Mexico Program Builds Solidarity Among Climate Leaders

WEA launched our new Mexico Program this month, centered around partnerships with six women-led collectives creating environmental impact throughout the country. 


It’s hard to believe that only ten months have passed since our team visited Mexico last spring to reestablish our partnership with Fondo Semillas and connect with numerous grassroots, women-led collectives working at the intersection of gender and climate justice. And, less than a year later, we are thrilled to have returned for the official launch of WEA’s Mexico program!

WEA's Mexico Program Leads
WEA's Mexico Program Leads

During a weeklong training that culminated on International Women’s Day and the marcha del 8M, we brought six new WEA Program Leads on board. We will work in close collaboration with these locally- and women-led partner organizations over the coming years, to co-design and implement initiatives for environmental, social, and economic impact.


Much of our week together was spent in deep reflection, as our partners shared stories about the ways their communities and families — and in many cases, they themselves — have been impacted by the overlapping and compounding threats of climate change and gender-based violence:

  • Mexico has one of the highest (and increasing) rates of femicide in the world; over 3,000 women and girls are murdered each year, and rampant gender-based violence there intersects with the worsening environmental impacts of climate change and unsustainable resource consumption. 
  • Mexico City — a metropolis of nearly 22 million people, which has long been impacted by water and air pollution issues — is projected to run out of water in a matter of months. 
  • Transnational corporations and governments purchase large swaths of agricultural lands via giant land grabs that impact rural communities, threaten traditional agricultural practices, and jeopardize indigenous seed varieties that maintain biodiversity and promote healthier, more climate-resilient ecosystems. 
  • Around the world, women climate leaders experience high rates of violence in retaliation for speaking out against environmental destruction and extractive industry. In 2022, Latin America accounted for 88% of killings of land and environmental defenders. 

These are just some of the challenges that our partners throughout Mexico aim to address, drawing on their intimate knowledge and lived experience to defend their lands and bodies, increase women’s economic independence, and maintain traditional cultures and lifeways while mitigating the impacts of climate change.
We are honored to work alongside these partners, and to support their critical work through capacity-building, knowledge-sharing, and financing — all while connecting and strengthening networks of grassroots, women-led initiatives across Mexico. 

Meet our Mexico Program Leads!

WEA’s Mexico Program is designed in partnership with Fondo Semillas — a key leader in feminist philanthropy in Mexico — which provided the foundation for our program and helped WEA connect with Mexican women-led organizations working across a range of sectors, including ocean conservation, food sovereignty, indigenous lifeways, health equity, reproductive justice, and eco-entrepreneurship. We are thrilled to be working in partnership with Fondo Semillas and the following organizations and initiatives.


Afrocaracolas Mexico

AfroCaracolas is an anti-racist and Afro-Feminist collective in Guerrero dedicated to protecting and promoting the human rights of Black and Afro-Mexican women from an intersectional perspective. Their work is focused on increasing women’s political participation and economic autonomy, advancing Afro-centric and antiracist narratives, protecting reproductive rights, and fostering environmental justice.

Las Cañadas Bosque de Niebla

Las Cañadas Mexico

Las Cañadas Bosque de Niebla is an agroecological cooperative in Veracrúz that hosts courses and apprentice programs to enable community members to learn about and adopt sustainable and regenerative agriculture practices. Since 1994, Las Cañadas has conserved 260 hectares of cloud forest — one of the world's most biodiverse and threatened ecosystems — and implemented a range of agroecological food systems and eco-technologies that allow cooperative members to live sustainably on the land.

Mujeres de la Tierra, Mujeres de la Periferia

Mujeres de la Tierra Mexico

Mujeres de la Tierra, Mujeres de la Periferia is an Indigenous women’s collective in Milpa Alta, an area on the outskirts of Mexico City. Economic dependence, limited access to secondary or higher education, and low rates of land- and home-ownership put women and young people there in a vulnerable situation, where they are particularly impacted by physical and domestic violence fueled by machismo, racism, and classism. Through workshops and awareness-building, Mujeres de la Tierra, Mujeres de la Periferia seeks to shine a light on the various forms of violence that threaten the lives of women and girls, while promoting the importance of caring for the land, good nutrition, and consumption of local products. The members of the collective are dedicated to defending their territory and stewarding the land by embracing traditional agroecological practices and promoting Indigenous foodways based on blue corn, cactus, beans and squash.

Poj Kää

Poj Kaa Mexico

Poj Kää works within the Indigenous Ayuujk community of Tlahuitoltepec, in the Sierra Mixe in Oaxaca. They aim to increase access to traditional Indigenous knowledge in agriculture and medicine, promote biodiversity, and ensure an equitable, sustainable society. Through participatory workshops, Poj Kää supports Ayuujk women, girls, and young people to learn about agro-ecology, medicinal plants, and land rights. They are also supporting community members to create ecological bathrooms and are preserving a botanical garden to promote biodiversity, protect ancestral knowledge about medicinal plants, and revitalize their Indigenous language of Ayuujk.

Sirenas de Mexico


Sirenas de Mexico is a new collective being formed by several organizations dedicated to promoting gender equity while protecting Mexico’s precious ocean ecosystems. Communidad y Biodiversidad (COBI) was established in 1999 to promote marine conservation and sustainable fisheries management while working hand in hand with coastal communities and locally-led organizations — organizations like Sirenas de Natividad and Centro Comunitario de Investigación y Monitoreo Submarino (CECIMS). Together, the three organizations are creating a first-of-its-kind network, connecting Mexican women in ocean conservation, providing them with tools for implementing citizen science and monitoring marine biodiversity, and working to ensure safety for women in the industry.

Union de Pueblos de Morelos


Unión de Pueblos de Morelos (UPM) is a social and solidarity-building economic initiative that originally formed in the 1980s when representatives from independent farming (or campesino) communities throughout the state of Morelos came together in the hopes of achieving food sovereignty and a more just society. Today, UPM organizes with rural campesinos to help improve crop production and boost local economies — while ensuring that women’s participation in farming and food production leads to their increased economic autonomy. During COVID, the women of UPM created Bazar Campo-Ciudad, an online store through which urban consumers in Cuernavaca (and its surrounding areas) are able to buy fresh, local products from rural producers, ensuring fair pay and increasing access to markets for farm workers whose businesses were severely impacted by the pandemic.

We are eagerly looking forward to sharing how our work alongside our partners in Mexico will grow over the coming months and years! 

Photo Credit: Eduardo Velasco 

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