1. What were some of the specific issues people in Iran were grappling with in their communities?
2. How could local civil society bring more accountability and creative problem solving to these issues?
Answering those questions led to conversations with people throughout the country and in the diaspora. What was on their minds? What were they concerned with. For many, it was access to the economy, public spaces, and healthcare. For others, it was corruption, citizenship, and education. There were concerns over perceived threats to cultural identity as well as incidents of child marriage. What the research showed was a population striving to improve itself. It also showed a population threatened by greed, short-sightedness, and lack of avenues for engagement and expression.
Yet, people in Iran keep surprising us with their creative efforts for change. They keep standing up and shaking things up – even in the face of overwhelming punishment. Women stand up for their rights even when faced with outrageous punishments. Teachers demand dignity and fair pay. Conservationists stand up to the degradation of the environment.
People do what they can. Small acts lead to big changes.
President of the Board