ANNUAL REPORT 2021
MESSAGE FROM OUR SALIENT EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Twelve years ago, I found in Mentes Puertorriqeñas en Acción (MPA) a space to build a project for our country. I remember when everything clicked. During the first edition of PARACa we went on a guided tour with Melba Ayala from Excursiones Eco to Caño Martín Peña. Melba showed us the contrast of inequity between neighboring communities separated by longdistance car rides but minutes away from the San Juan Estuary. At that moment, I decided that I would professionally dedicate myself to supporting social and community projects.
For 12 years, we've created an Agents of Change community, leaders who are working on environmental, artistic, educational, gender violence, and corruption projects. We formed alliances with colleagues and served as fiscal sponsors for innovative and daring projects. With solidarity, we responded to hurricanes and earthquakes becoming a medium of placement and influence for youth.
We've grown to be a platform for creating an inclusive and anti-racist language guide in Puerto Rico. With our programs, we've raised the standards in the internship ecosystem and built a culture of civic participation in youth. Last year (2021) brought many changes, including a new generation of leaders and Agents of Change taking the charge of the movements that will shape Puerto Rico for the next few years. This report marks a baton pass to youth that will define the direction of MPA and the development of the country's future leaders. Thanks to everyone who has accompanied me in these 12 years, building this platform of change for the country. We have to promote all those projects we have discussed and conspired with. I also thank the new generation that has accepted the challenge of directing MPA. I'll confess that having the opportunity to contribute again as one more member of the MPA community with you excites me the most.
Best, Alejandro Silva Díaz, Executive Director (2015-2021)
MESSAGE FROM OUR NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR I met MPA and participated in the PARACa program in 2012. I knew that MPA was the space for me to connect, conspire, and create social projects focused on transforming Puerto Rico into a fair, supportive, and participatory country. From that moment, I made MPA my lives project for Puerto Rico and chose to be a conscious, sensitive, and effective agent of change. After a nine-year career as Program and Community Outreach Director at MPA, where my calls to conspire and collaborate were always present, I have enthusiastically accepted the opportunity and commitment to serve as the new Executive Director of our organization. Although my responsibilities will change, my call to action and alliances will continue within our organization. Our engine is our MPA community. Puerto Rico's current situation calls for a continuity of our services, to be the space where a new generation of young university students and professionals can generate solutions to the challenges that we face. It's up to us to mobilize and create structures where young leaders can occupy decision-making positions in the public and private sectors. Only under effective leadership, like the one built at MPA, will we achieve the Puerto Rico of our dreams.
For over a decade, we've been building our MPA community. Today, many members are in professional positions, others within academia or transitioning to their professional lives. For this reason, I invite you to sit and think about your role as part of this community. We will continue making our life project a project for Puerto Rico! See you soon,
Carolina Mejías Rivera, Executive Director 2021
BOARD OF DIRECTORS Cristian Martínez Medina President
Brayan Rosa Rodríguez
Natasha de León Rodríguez
Mayte Bayolo Alonso Vicepresident
Natalie Caraballo Veléz
Glenisse Pagán Ortiz
Gio Blanco Hernández Treasurer
René Vargas Martínez Secretary
Rauluy Santos Collado
Andreica Maldonado Arroyo
Emmanuelli Algarín Concepción
Aníbal López Correa
Alma Díaz Carrión
Daniel Matos Meléndez
ADVISORY BOARD Ana María Garcia Blanco
Dra. Myrna Rivas
Roberto Soto Acosta
Aníbal Núñez González
Denisse Rodríguez Colón
Luz Santos Acevedo
Mary Ann Gabino
Marla Pérez Lugo
Limarys Suárez Torres
Sandra Villerrael Hernández
María de los Milagros Colón Rodríguez
Zulma Rovira Pérez
PARACa FAMILY CONCIENSE DIVERSITY INNOVATION UNION ADVENTUREE #PARACa2021 | Agents of Change
TO ME IS... COMMUNITY FRIENDSHIP TRANSFORMATION DEVELOPMENT GROWTH EMPOWERMENT #PARACa2021 | Agents of Change
Young Agents of Change
Alliances with Internship Centers
191 Projects Generated for P.R. This is our first year with the most geographical diversity! We have new MPA members from 20 different municipalities.
FIVE PARTICIPANTS JOINED THE PARACA ANNUAL EDITION AND THE #ENACCIÓN ADVOCACY LABS
CLAIM TO HAVE DEVELOPED LEADERSHIP SKILLS
INDICATED BEING READY TO CREATE THEIR SOCIAL PROJECT
RETENTION RATE IN INTERNSHIP CENTERS
37 SYSTEMS PRODUCED
IN GENERATED RESOURCES FOR NPOs IN P.R.
PARTICIPANTS RENEWD THEIR INTERNSHIP POSITIONS
#ENACCIÓN ADVOCACY LABS
GENERATED PROJECTS TACKLING:
Abortion in Puerto Rico Education in the communities of Río Piedras Volunteerism in High Schoolers Inclusive Communication in Deaf Communities Public Policy in Vulnerable Populations
P. del S.9 PARTICIPATION IN PUBLIC HEARINGS
PROYECT TO ERRADICATE HUNGER We had discussions with senators to incentivize the use of surplus food. We deposed before the Commission on Community Initiatives, Mental Health, and Addiction to expose the student population's needs regarding food access.
P. del S. 293 We were part of the Anti-Poverty Coalition supporting the "Eradication of Child Poverty in Puerto Rico" project.
P. de la C.817 \
We gave input on the Law of Fair Internships, which aims to regulate unpaid internship experiences. The House of Representatives has already approved the project.
Participation in the "Advocacy Day" led by the Anti-Poverty Coalition.
PUBLISHED OUR FIRTS ANTHOLOGY "JÓVENES CONSTRUYENDO PAÍS" This written piece created by the MPA community captures the stories of 25 young Agents of Change committed to Puerto Rico.
ANTOLOGÍA DE LA JUVENTUD
The MPA community makes Puerto Rico their life's project by contributing to: 4 community projects 2 educational projects 4 environmental projects 9 citizen participation projects 3 philanthropic projects 2 gender violence projects
WE LAUNCHED A GUIDE TO IMPLEMENT INCLUSIVE AND ANTI-RACIST LANGUAGE IN WORKPLACES.
14,500 people reached on social media 1,446
people reached at its launch event on Facebook
downloads in the first trimester of release
INCLUSION INITIATIVES Andrea Zambrana
Inarú de la Fuente
Our guide is a reference and part of the work plan in different organizations and foundations in the non-profit sector. Media outlets such as El Calce, El Adoquín Times, TeleOnce, and El Vocero reviewed the guide through press releases. 11 non-profit organizations that address issues of inclusivity and anti-racism endorsed our guide.
FISCAL SPONSORSHIP We supported the restoration of southern communities affected by earthquakes.
We assisted in the development of four communities in Toa Baja.
We contributed to the sustainability of the Villas del Sol community in Toa Baja. We supported projects of transparency and inspection of public contracting.
2021's RAFAEL AND CELESTINA CORDERO AWARD As part of the Puerto Rico Community Foundation 35th anniversary celebration, they recognized Alejandro Silva Díaz with the Rafael and Celestina Cordero Award.
Mentes Puertorriqueñas en Acción, Inc. #167 Ave Ponce de León San Juan, PR 00917 PO Box 30518 San Juan, PR 00929 MentesPuertorriqueñasenAcción
Special acknowledgment to : John Logan, Clint Hedin, Sanjay Chandiram, Alan Stevens, Brock Pirce, Andy Do, Chidester Tanner, and Suying Liu.