Cecilia Dockendorff

Ashoka Fellow
Santiago, Chile
Fellow Since 1995


This profile was prepared when Cecilia Dockendorff was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1995.
The New Idea
Cecilia Dockendorff is deeply troubled by a growing gulf between rich and poor in Chilean society and by the absence of concern among many Chileans in relatively comfortable circumstances for the well-being of their less fortunate neighbors. As she puts it, "there are two Chiles and they never meet." But she also believes that the widespread passivity and failure to respond to pressing social needs that characterize the current moment in Chile's history can be overcome, that additional and much-needed human and financial resources can be channeled into social action and that the country's ailing civil society can be reinvigorated.
Working through a nongovernmental organization that she established in 1993, Cecilia is engaged in an ambitious program to reawaken concern for the well-being of the community at large and to stimulate engagement in social action. The centerpiece of her effort is a widely distributed "Guide to United Action" that acquaints its readers with a broad array of community service organizations and projects and invites support, in the form of volunteer service and financial contributions, for those undertakings. The guide has met with an immensely encouraging response and Cecilia is now developing several other initiatives with similarly promising potential for spurring volunteerism and philanthropy in Chile.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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