To the community that has followed and supported Puente,
For nearly 20 years, Puente has worked in the state of Oaxaca to advance food sovereignty and develop capacity in communities to realize meaningful change. We have been proud to support Mexican farmers, their families, and their communities in creating new realities that value their choice and autonomy.
This would not have been possible without the support and hard work of those who have been part of Puente throughout our history. Our staff has worked tirelessly to address challenging but critical issues that affect the livelihood and wellbeing of Oaxacans. Our partner communities opened their hearts, homes, and lives to us. Our partner organizations worked with us to build integral solutions for sustainable development. And, our funders and donors supported us with substantial and generous resources to realize this work.
Holding deep gratitude and reverence for all of this partnership in relationships, experience, knowledge, and support, we are taking the next step in our lifecycle as an organization. Recognizing that the nonprofit environment in Mexico has become increasingly difficult, in January 2022, we will launch a strategic alliance with our longtime partner, SiKanda.
Puente and SiKanda share core values and aspirations, and we understand the challenges of supporting and empowering the Oaxacans who depend on us the most. Both organizations have strong track records in creating lasting social impact for Oaxaca’s most vulnerable communities. It is our collective desire to leverage existing resources to make a greater impact, where benefits from the alliance for those served become greater than those generated from our individual efforts alone.
Although the value proposition will shift going forward from that of Puente’s existing mission and vision, this is a well-planned and strategically anchored alliance between long-time partners and friends. After several years of knowing SiKanda’s Directors José Carlos León Vargas and Aurelia Annino, we have a deep respect for their leadership and approach to community development. José Carlos served for six years on the Puente Board of Directors, and his strategic insight, values, and work ethic are central to our decision to engage in this alliance. We are grateful that he and Aurelia will be leading our path forward.
At the heart of this alliance is both organizations’ commitment to improve the quality of life of Oaxacans through sustainable development. Through those efforts, our hope and dream is that underserved communities are more resourced to live just and equitable lives.
The past 19 years have been an exciting journey. We are deeply grateful for our staff, partners, farmers, funders, donors, and friends along the way–together, we made so much progress and did such important work. Collectively, we have touched countless lives in Oaxaca, Mexico, and beyond. Our Board remains passionate about and deeply committed to Puente’s mission and the people of Oaxaca, and we are confident that this next step will best enable us to continue making progress toward that mission.
As co-founders of Puente, we have been honored to do this work for nearly 20 years alongside so many others who believe so passionately in our mission. We have invested our hearts and minds into this organization, and we know this is the right path forward.
We are honored to have shared this journey with all of you, and we are eternally grateful for your support.
Kate Seely and Katherine Lorenz
For additional information contact:
About SiKanda: Founded in 2009, SiKanda is an independent, non-profit organization based in Oaxaca, that promotes sustainable development and human rights within a diversity of communities in Oaxaca in the Oaxaca Valley, as well as the Mixteca and Costa Regions. SiKanda focuses on five programmatic areas, including sustainability, interculturality, gender equity, intergenerational engagement, and human rights as pillars in the projects. SiKanda has received awards and commendations from the UN, the European Union, foreign embassies and the Mexican Government.