26 January 2009
After over 24 hours of travel, we finally arrived in hot, humid Belém and we are taking in the atmosphere. There is a live band and dancers at the baggage carousel which surprises us and sets the tone and friendly mood.
As we enter the city on our way to our hotel we can see big billboards welcoming WSF participants in many languages. We can also see WSFers scattered along the main road giving out maps and information. As we checked in we met with some people from War on Want's partner organisations -- the coordinator for the Landless Workers Movement (MST) from Brazil and two members of Abahlali in South Africa.
Abahlali's people explained to us how difficult it was for a small organisation to attend as it is extremely expensive Both of our partners from Brazil and South Africa will be gathering in the MST/Via Campesina tent where a lot of grassroots movements will be running activities. It already seems like everyone staying in our hotel is here for the Forum. Time to plan our evening and see what's on!