Gabriela Cano Azcarraga

YC Member 1999-2006

From Mexico

Since I aged out the YC I have focused my work mostly to develop local work. The organization I collaborate with had opened a major program to work with indigenous populations in México and we have opened a Center to promote Sustainable Development that we called TOTALMANIK what in nahuatl means “our land” in a small town in the Sierra of Puebla called Cuetzalan.

I’m still involved in SRHR field, I’m not doing advocacy directly but I’m developing and implementing trainings for young people and women about human rights, gender equity, SRR and citizenship what in many ways ends in promoting advocacy activities, targeting the Municipal Government and the Puebla State Government. I.e, this year we are supporting the launching of a Young Indigenous people network of promoters of SRR issues that has as one of their objectives to become interlocutors with the government to advance indigenous youth SRR.

Besides the training activities (on line and in person) in developing I am involved in knowledge generation work, I coordinate the Gender Violence and Social Marginalization Observatory for the Northern Sierra of Puebla, which is a place where we compile and produce qualitative and quantitative data, we are an interface between civil society and government and we provide support to people attending their requests and redirecting them (to NGOs, public institutions, specialists…) when necessary.

In 2006 I was invited to be part of IPAS Board of Directors and I have been very honored collaborating what means a lot for me because within the themes related to SRR, legal and accessible access to abortion services is the one I am more committed with.

How YC affected me and my life? Well YC was not part of my life for 7 years, it was “my full life”, I got there experience and knowledge, professional contacts, friends, HISTORY. Without doubt it will be one of the most loved and rich experiences of my life. Professionally it gave me experiences that helped and still helps me to develop the work I do and to be able to interact with so many people from civil society, governments, agencies, etc., also opened me a wide range of opportunities that are very useful now and in the future.

Beside this, YC gave me the experience of growing unforgettable relations of sisterhood, love, and union with people that have been important in my life and that most of them are still close to me and we share friendship and care even the geographical distance. YC is like a ray of the sun that will always be with me.