Rosa Villarreal, Facilitator

Rosa Villarreal (back row, centre) with brigadistas from her community.

I began working as a SEPA brigadista in 2004, in my beloved neighbourhood. Today, after being promoted by the brigade to become a delegate to CIET, I am facilitating and contributing to this SEPA process, sharing with my neighbourhoods, since SEPA is a community school where we all learn.

Personally, the most important change comes from having direct contact with the population and their leaders, and listening to their problems. It makes me reflect on the great need that human beings have to be heard; several times, without needing to be psychologists, we can send a message of hope and joy to these brothers and sisters.

The most important change I perceived in one of our neighbourhoods was the involvement of its leaders in the SEPA brigade. This produced direct contact and communication with community leaders. This one-on-one communication leads to changing negative situations into positive ones, encompasses human values, such as love for our neighbours and the realisation that we as leaders have an obligation to listen and try to provide solutions to the community.

The most important change I perceived in another neighbourhood was the integration of two sectors whose leaders who at the time had differences that somehow affected the good relationships that must exist within a community. With regards to SEPA, the households in the study were located in both sectors, so we had to hold dialogues with each sector’s leader to gain collective support in the neighbourhood. We managed to establish harmony and they committed themselves to working together and supporting all the activities we were going to carry out.