Education and Research Center for Rural Women of Tarija (El Centro
de Capacitación e Investigación de la Mujer Campesina de Tarija)
is a non-governmental, non-profit organization that has promoted
social development in the Tarija region of Bolivia since 1986.
However, CCIMCAT was not founded as an NGO, but rather as the
attempt of woman leaders to promote political and social activity
in the lives of rural women.
We lived many moments where, looking back, we were
exceptionally adventurous: we did not have basic resources like an
office or means of transportation. We learned how to walk for
hours, through mud, carrying blankets and food for twelve days.
However, the worst part was to arrive at a site where the women we
came to help did not believe that we were capable of providing
assistance because we were young, women, not professionals and did
not possess a car. We experienced even more doubts in men.
Moreover, the majority of our fellow NGOs as well as the Church
claimed we were destroying the rural family with our feminist
ideology; they tried to discredit us through libels and
In the 1990`s, when gender became a fundamental element of all
development policies, we elaborated our mandate and, gradually,
our programs gained momentum.