The Forus Barefoot Guide: How do we practice collaboration in these times?

By Forus International

Collaboration is vital for transformative social change. But how do we practice collaboration in these times? That is the question driving Future Convergence: the Forus Barefoot Guide. The Guide and the campaign value our human history as a complex and intricate story of committed social change actors. We believe that civil society organisations have a unique and historic role in re-orienting people to work together, reducing polarisation and nurturing our shared humanity. But we also need to challenge ourselves, turning towards each other to mobilise and multiply our collective power. 

In the Forus Barefoot Guide, we explore real experiences, innovative practices, ways of collaborating and leadership forms that offer hope for a way forward. This practical resource is intended for individuals and organisations who want to improve their learning processes and social change practices. Written by thirty-one civil society leaders and practitioners from twenty countries worldwide, it reunites practices and experiences that bring diverse people and organisations together towards a vision of a more equitable, inclusive, humane, and sustainable planet

Each chapter focuses on a different topic, ranging from our understanding of “power”, our engagement with governments and the private sector, and civil society’s capacity to adapting in the face of the globalisation of social issues to collective leadership, relationships with donors, synergies with social movements, and the process of continual, horizontal learning.

Around the Guide, we have developed a multimedia and multilingual campaign with surveys to collected positive practices of collaboration from around the globe, podcast episodes and Conversation Starters – a series of videos focusing on topics from each chapter of the Guide that allows for interaction. 

Want to share your experience? Read the Forus Barefoot Guide here and join the campaign! The Guide is available in English, French and Spanish.

A big thank you to all the writers and Forus members, Doug Reeler, Nomvula Dlamini and Rubert Van Blerk from the Barefoot Guide Connection and Tamarind Tree Associates, South Africa, and Marcela Terán from Liberation Works for developing the Guide and campaign with us.

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