For those working to implement processes of systemic change, one of the keys is to understand how marginalized people actually experience change in their lives. Thankfully, strong research is emerging as we enter into the “post-MDG” world. Our Vincentian Family representatives at the United Nations are part of our contribution to the debate, but thorough implementation is every Vincentian’s responsibility.

The Participate initiative provides high quality evidence on the reality of poverty at ground level, bringing the perspectives of the poorest into the post-2015 debate.

Participate aims to:

Bring perspectives of those in poverty into decision-making processes
Embed participatory research in global policy-making
Use research with the poorest as the basis for advocacy with decision-makers
Ensure that marginalised people have a central role in holding decision-makers to account in the post-2015 process
Generate knowledge, understanding and relationships for the global public good

We all say we want to “listen to the voices of the poor.” The Participate initiative counsels, “Most of all, this research calls us to bear witness to the depth of insight and intelligence of people who face extremely difficult circumstances – and pay attention to what this can offer those who seek to promote development.” We would do well to heed their counsel. You can read about their ground-breaking research and access an extensive report on their findings here.

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