E14S12 The Art of Change: Peacebuilding Through Creative Expression and Dialogue with Maria Elisa Pinto Garcia

Summary & Key Takeways

In this episode of the Social Change Career Podcast, Dr. Zelizer interviewed Maria Elisa Pinto Garcia, a social entrepreneur, artist, and facilitator who has crafted an impressive career at the nexus of peacebuilding, art, and communication. With her roots deeply planted in the vibrant Colombian soil, Maria Elisa has used the universal language of music, the power of visual art to foster peace and understanding in a region long troubled by conflict.

Why You Should Listen

Intersecting Creativity with Social Impact: Explore her journey to using art as a tool for reconciliation and peacebuilding in Colombia’s war-affected areas, to leading an NGO, to working on a global network of local peacebuilders and her path as a musician.

Challenges and Opportunities in Peacebuilding: Gain insights on the complexities of sustaining a non-governmental organization in a complex peacebuilding system, including the pursuit of funding and the quest for systemic change.

Music as a Catalyst for Memory and Healing: Learn from Maria Elisa's research exploring the therapeutic role of music composed by victims and ex-combatants in Colombia, and leveraging music for peacebuilding.

Navigating Careers in Change-Making: Learn actionable tips and career insights for upskilling, staying hireable, along with her thoughts on the importance of soft skills in the application process.

The Future of Peacebuilding: Reflect on the her involvement in innovative approaches to trauma-informed collaboration and learn about movements like Shift the Power pushing for a radical recentering of power and funding in development and beyond.

Also if you want to check out her music and support her first album, check out her crowdfunding campaign on Vaki. As she explains

Therefore, I feel that the time has come to be able to share my music through the different platforms so that it can be heard and so that it can reach the places wherever it wants to. We will record, with the musicians who have been with me, a live session capable of capturing the soul of my songs from the musical, the audiovisual and the symbolic. The idea is that these songs will then be available on YouTube, Spotify and other platforms where they can be listened to and shared.

Bio: Maria Elisa Pinto Garcia dedicates her life to the intersection of artistry and advocacy. With an impressive track record of designing and delivering creative projects, Maria Elisa has touched the lives of thousands, steering cultural initiatives towards addressing structural and cultural violence. Alongside her role as Operations Lead of Reimagine Peacebuilding and her work with the Prolongar Foundation, Maria Elisa continues to inspire as an "artivist," blending her passion for music with her unwavering commitment to human rights and social change.

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