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As children and young people take on a prominent leadership role in action on issues like climate change, how do we effectively equip younger generations with the skills to become agents of change in their communities?

To help explore this question, we’re excited to introduce Mariali Cárdenas of Mexico as our Face of Change for January!

Mariali is the co-Founder of Vía Educación, the trailblazing civil society and education organization that is combining community organizing and innovative education approaches to build the citizenship skills of children and young people.

Currently Mariali and Vía Educación’s work on citizenship education is being implemented as part of Mexico’s national curriculum. Embedding this into the curriculum is just the foundation, and requires organizing with teachers and communities to embed the framework and tools across the country.

Their work on the ground is focused on both upskilling children and young people with citizenship skills and creating spaces to exercise their agency on the issues they care about – including the environment and development.

In this session you’ll learn about:

  • Vía Educación’s approach to citizenship education for children and young people
  • How they organized to have it implemented in the national curriculum
  • How they are using community organizing in indigenous rural communities to implement the approach and tools to empower children and young people as agents of change on the issues facing their communities


What: Faces of Change with Mariali Cárdenas & Vía Educación

When: Thursday 30th January / 10:00-11:15am EDT & 4:00-5:15pm CET

Where: Online (Zoom)


Register for free here.


Read more about Mariali (provided by Vía Educación):

Mariali is a founding member of Vía Educación, a non-profit organization based in Mexico focused on generating socially sustainable opportunities through the design, implementation and evaluation of educational strategies.

Mariali and Vía Educación’s work has expanded educational opportunities for underprivileged children in different contexts – including rural, indigenous and urban settings.

Her particular interest of research is the understanding of how children and young people can develop citizen skills and democratic practices through participatory methodologies within the formal educational context and how they can improve their lives as they become agents of change in their communities.

Mariali has a Masters in Education from Harvard University and learned community organizing as a student of Marshal Ganz in 2000.

Combining innovative education theories and the community organizing framework she learned from Marshall Ganz, she has worked with the Ministry of Education, teachers and communities to generate spaces of genuine children participation in development and environmental care.

At this time her work is been applied throughout the National Curriculum and in the Mountains of the Tarahumara indigenous communities in Mexico.

She also serves as a specialized advisor for UNESCO-Latin America for the Target 4.7 Global Citizenship and Sustainability of the Sustainable Development Goals.