World Social Forum 2016: Montreal

These GGJ members participated in the World Social Forum:

Cooperation Jackson: Kali Akuno, Brandon King

Vermont Workers Center: Shela Linton and Zenia Muhammad, Shela’s daughter

Indigenous Environmental Network: Gitz Derange, Emy Ulloa, Tom Goldtooth

SouthWest Organizing Project: Emma Sandoval

Got Green?: Jill Mangaliman

AfroEco: Rose Brewer

Activist San Diego: Martin Eder

GGJ staff: Cindy Wiesner, Jaron Browne, Helena Wong


Outcomes of the World Social Forum:

Global Well Being/ Climate Justice:

  • Connecting with allies post CC21, first time since Paris reconvening, orienting on the social movement global strategy

  • Prep for COP22 and moving forward with national specific strategy

Grassroots Feminism/ World March of Women:

  • Continue to build the Justice for Berta campaign

  • Participate in WMW activities: WECAN and WMW Quebec; as well as the Social movement assembly and TPP- Global Campaign to Dismantle Corporations

  • Strengthen WMW branch development Emma/SWOP and Jill/ Got Green



Delegate Feedback:


Gitz Derange, IEN:

“The presentations although very informative still had an air of colonization routed in its philosophies. What I mean by that, is how they were going to save the world by a sweeping ideology that was going to replace the former. Colonizers tend to have an idea of perceived enlightenment that has to be spread across the planet to save the planet… It’s hard to sit in these places when silencing of indigenous peoples is currently an ongoing practice… It is the responsibility of those who are presenting to bring representation or bring about working coalitions with those peoples. We cannot expect to go anywhere but down without the influence and input from Indigenous peoples globally around the planet.”

Jill Mangaliman, Got Green?:

“This is was my first World Social Forum and visit to Montreal. I had the opportunity to attend Grassroots Global Justice's workshop on the US 2016 Elections, a much needed discussion of how the hate of the far right has intensified as of late. This brought home why more than ever we need build alternatives to the 2-party system and a way of politics in the US to gather and activate progressive folks who reject capitalism, patriarchy, imperialism, and racism.  Since this WSF was organized in the Global North, conversations lacked a strong analysis and context of colonization and imperialism which Global North countries have repeated throughout in history. Speaking on a panel of Women and Climate Change, I had the opportunity to meet some of the women leaders on the front lines and learn about their challenges and aspirations, what it means to carry on the legacy of those who have come before us. As people living in the USA, in the belly of the beast we need to speak out against trans-national corporations and the militarization and violence which our countries bring. Most importantly, we must follow the lead of indigenous people, black people, and those from the Global South who are most impacted by the injustices of the current extractive economy in order to ensure in a system that liberates all of us. I left the WSF feeling very reflective and also ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work.”

Zenia Muhammad, Vermont Workers Center:

“I am fourteen.. The experience as a whole was amazing and had a deep impact on me as an individual. Starting off was the opening march and there was so many groups there! It was so great to see people coming together to fight for change based on problems that gradually affect us daily. I learned a lot about indigenous cultures having to fight for their land and homes due to companies trying to take it over. And learned about the story Berta Cáceres, what she did as an environmental activist...Considering my mother is an activist this had such a deep impact on me, especially when I watched Bertas’ daughters speak at a gathering for her.

At the Forum I attended the youth space and went to a couple different workshops. The one I really enjoyed was a workshop on feminism that was led by youth. We discussed real life scenarios, did hands-on activities, and talked about discriminatory things that have happened directly to people... it was inspiring and cool to see younger people being more involved in what is happening in the world.

...I got really inspired to get more involved with activism in my community especially someone who is in a position of youth. Attending the world social forum was very eye opening and has encouraged me to take more action in unjust situations, problems affecting the earth, and all activist needed times.”