In this article, Liliana Vaccaro discusses the educational experience of a particular popular education project in Chile, called the Learning Workshops. This program, which has been in existence for twelve years, has evolved in many areas. Vaccaro documents its evolution by explaining how the Workshops' teaching practice has become more effective, how popular educators have taken total control of some projects, and more recently, how coordinating groups of popular educators are being formed to provide a more permanent educational resource in their communities. Vaccaro identifies some of the strategies and processes that are crucial for achieving appropriation — that is, when popular educators are motivated and prepared to take control of, or appropriate, the educational project in their own communities. This article presents the educational efforts of people who, despite their poverty and the Chilean government's historical indifference to their problems and needs, have committed themselves to improving their lives and have taken control of their destinies. Vaccaro speaks about the commitment of people who are working to construct a democratic society which guarantees quality education, personal safety and health, and opportunities for improvement for all.

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