Knead bread and talk to combat violence against women in Mexico

Mexico City, Apr 12 (EFE) .- Kneading, baking and talking, this is how Las Panas, a Mexican organization, faces violence against women. Led by several psychologists and bakers, a group of women from the State of Mexico and the capital talk about their situations of vulnerability, in most cases related to gender violence.

"Personally, I came with many doubts and they are clarifying them for me," Rosario, one of the three students who attended the workshop today, told Efe on Monday.

In the last session, the woman, who agrees to speak for the cameras, learned with her colleagues to make donuts, and while they waited for the dough to grow, they talked and learned about accounting for a food venture.

And that is what, after several years looking for the way to provide knowledge and psychological support to women with situations of vulnerability and violence, they are doing in Las Panas, whose founder, Rosalía Trujano, realized the power of bread as soon as it began. to do it in a collective.

"I realized that I could coexist with my colleagues in a different way when we made bread. There was a very different coexistence, especially in times of rest, which was when the dough rose (it grew from the yeast) and when we put them in the oven. Those times gave us the opportunity to live together, to share knowledge, to give us advice, "the founder told Efe.

Trujano, a psychologist and social worker by profession, created the project three years ago, which was leading to the current situation, after starting to make bread with her neighbors in their apartment in the historic center of the Mexican capital, in order to create ties .

"My intention at that time was to create a community map. But little by little I realize that that was my interest, not that of the neighbors, theirs was to live together," he explained.

While the bread was baking, her neighbors began to recount situations of their life and, as the sessions went by, they discussed more personal issues such as that their children were in jail or that they had no money.

"Many of the things they said were related to gender violence," stated Trujano.

According to the accounts of civil organizations and associations, in this country more than 10 women are murdered every day. And the official data collect in 2020 a total of 967 femicides, murders based on gender.

Tragic figures that have driven the feminist movement in recent years.

For this reason, the methodology of the sessions evolved towards situations of vulnerability and violence against women and Rosalía sought this workshop as one more tool to react in the best possible way to situations of violence.

During the workshop, explanations about where to go or action protocols are inserted, for example.

In addition, in their current premises, they have a space where they offer individual therapies to the women who attend the workshops, to deepen the topics they opened during the bread sessions.


There are several psychologists and bakers that make up the Las Panas team, among which is Mafer Rodríguez, who met Trujano two years ago and currently teaches the bread workshop that is focused on women from the periphery.

"What I liked the most about Las Panas is how it integrates. For me it is very important that women have other tools that allow them economic autonomy. It is a super integral project because they get together, share experiences, work on emotions and (the workshops ) they become super cathartic, "said the baker, who always focused her work on the social.

And it is that in addition to talking and telling personal experiences, the attendees are also given training on entrepreneurship and how to start a bread business in a way that produces good performance.

"It is making me very beautiful and very fun. I am learning and I am looking at a way to obtain financial means," explained Rosario, who although she did not delve into her personal life, explained that it was her daughter who told her that she should go because she was saw "locked up and depressed at home" when she has been a very active woman all her life.


However, the pandemic hampered Las Panas' most important objective, which is to "create a network of women" in which they all stay connected to help each other in diverse situations.

But Rosalía and all her companions undertook the task of not losing contact with those who had been attending the workshops, something that was not easy because some of them did not even have a mobile phone.

Now little by little they are taking up the workshops -with reduced capacity and all the measures- and women like Rosario are anxiously waiting for Saturday to arrive every 15 days.

"Coming here makes us feel like family," he said.

In addition to the free workshops for women from the periphery, with functional diversity or other vulnerable situations, Las Panas also offers workshops with "recovery costs" for those who have the possibility to pay. With this paid session, another free session is financed for women in vulnerable situations.

All with the aim that the project can be self-sustaining.


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