July 2, 2022—The Population Council in Mexico has been awarded a new grant to continue their work on the Abriendo Futuros (Opening Futures) project that promotes autonomy and improves the quality of life for indigenous girls in Mexico.

The two-year grant to consolidate and build on the project’s successes is funded by a $300,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Mich.

Abriendo Futuros strengthens girls’ life skills by nurturing learning in intercultural safe spaces facilitated by female Maya youth mentors, fostering intergenerational dialogue, and sharing knowledge and resources among the community.

“Abriendo Futuros is making a profound difference by building with adolescent girls assets to develop voice, choice, and self-determination. The W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s generous grant will help us sustain this important work with communities and allies—ingraining efforts and supporting girls and mentors to lead us in understanding how we can further support them,” says Isabel Vieitez Martínez, Country Director for the Population Council’s office in Mexico.

Maya adolescent girls from eight municipalities in Yucatan (Cantamayec, Cholul, Chacsinkín, Maní, Mayapán, Tipikal, Teabo, and Tixmehuac) participate in Abriendo Futuros. The project provides spaces that promote confidence in girls to participate in individual, family, and community decisions that affect their lives. Young mentors are trained to inform, advise, and manage the project as well as document findings and results. In addition, mothers join planned activities, building their capacity to engage with and support their daughters to improve decision-making.

Abriendo Futuros collaborates with local authorities, government institutions, and civil society organizations to incorporate additional services, spaces, programs, and opportunities.

“Indigenous girls in Mexico are among the country’s most disadvantaged people. In this next phase of the Abriendo Futuros project, we will go further to develop girls’ critical thinking and life skills,” Vieitez says. “By fostering their autonomy, adolescent girls and young women can contribute to their communities as agents of change. Their participation will be especially critical as their communities continue to work toward COVID-19 recovery.”

Learn more about Abriendo Futuros.

About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Mich., and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit www.wkkf.org.