Colombia is a beautiful and large country. It has a lot of energy and a great vibe. Last year a peace agreement was signed between the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Colombian government. It is a critical time for the country.
Unfortunately, the country continues to be plagued by conflict, under-development and massive human displacement. Recruitment, threats and assassinations to human rights defenders, homicides, sexual violence, restrictions on mobility and confinement still pose great challenges for consolidating respect for human rights.
And in 2017, the situation deteriorated. Spoilers are reinforcing polarization in the country and a precipice where the right kind of assistance can make a real difference.
Added to these dynamics of violence is the country´s high vulnerability in the face of natural disasters and the need to attend to the Venezuelan population. Roughly five million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.
As the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Colombia puts it: “2018 will be a year of great opportunities and humanitarian challenges for Colombia.” It is in this situation that Field Ready has decided to respond.
Field Ready is developing a two pronged program strategy: one helping with the peace process, by engaging where there have been a number of issues identified. The other is helping forcibly displaced placed people (including Venezuelans) along the border.
This will involve bringing people together to create local solutions to the immediate challenges they face. Unique designs will be created and solutions made by local people themselves. As usual, capacity-building, training and skills building will be a crucial part of any future projects.
In the process, people will be able to build their own resilience and feel empowered going forward.
A member of our assessment team, Max Aredez, observed, “I see great potential for having an impact here. We want to work and complement the work of others to reach as many people as possible.”