This month, COCo is excited to launch the Portes Ouvertes project!

Increasing anti-oppression capacity within community groups is one of COCo’s Six Strategic Directions. Portes Ouvertes: Réduire l’exclusion sociale dans les groupes communautaires du Québec, which will be conducted over the next six months in collaboration with participants from various community organizations, will address this issue directly.  Anti-oppression work and work around social exclusion operates in specific ways in the multi-lingual and diverse context of Québec.  Creating anti-oppression tools that will be useful for community groups working in the Québec context and creating an ongoing learning community, where community groups can draw on each other’s strengths and expertise are the primary goals of this project.

The project stems from from the results of COCo’s 2011 Just Practice: C’est Pratique project, where participants voiced a need for the development of concrete anti-oppression resources and tools to be made available for use in community organizations in Québec.  In addition, groups participating in Just Practice voiced a desire for the creation of an ongoing learning community, where anti-oppression issues could be worked on, talked about and resolved collaboratively: a space where community groups could draw on each other’s areas of expertise.  Portes Ouvertes seeks to work towards both of these important goals.

Portes Ouvertes, funded by the Ministère de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport (MELS), will involve the collaboration of community group leaders, facilitators and popular educators who are working on issues of anti-oppression and/or social exclusion in Québec.  Two working sessions will be held over the winter and early spring to share tools that have been developed and are currently being used by participants within their own organizations, and to collaboratively workshop these tools to make them accessible to other community groups.  These will then be made available publicly available through COCo’s network.

Working in the multilingual and diverse context of Québec provides particular opportunities and challenges to working on issues of social exclusion and anti-oppression.  Our goal in conducting Portes Ouvertes is to more closely lay out what these opportunities and challenges are in order to create tools of best practice that are relevant and useful for community groups working across Québec.

Please spread the word about this project through your networks and consider applying to participate in the Portes Ouvertes project!

You can find the application form here: Portes Ouvertes Application