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Our newsletters are published twice a year.

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Below is our most recent newsletter, followed by an archive of previous editions.

Claiming age-old rights in a new Colombia - Autumn 2018

"I want to defend my community's rights and give my people the chance of a better future," says Tomas, 17, from the Awa indigenous group. “Indigenous people have age-old rights and privileges; I want to learn to fight for them. This is what motivates me to get up, to go to school every day, to stay focused.”

The Awa has a population of 27,000, of whom 3,000 live on their ancestral lands in the far south of Colombia’s jungled Putumayo region, right on the border with Ecuador. Like many indigenous groups across Colombia, the Awa are threatened with cultural and even physical extinction. For decades, indigenous communities have been caught in the crossfire between rival armed groups, their lands littered with landmines and re-purposed for drug cultivation. Children and young people can see little future for themselves or their communities beyond ever-present conflict.

“When I was young I thought I’d become a soldier, but now I have a different vision of my future. The project has helped me understand the complexity of the problems our society faces. I’ve discovered my voice, my rights, my freedom to have opinions. I’ve learnt to discuss my ideas with other young people and to listen to and understand theirs. We’re learning how to live peacefully and build a strong society. Now that I understand the problems my people face, I want to study law. I want to help my people to claim their rights.”

Young indigenous Colombians like Tomas hold the key to their communities’ survival.

Please help them to gain the education they need to succeed.

Donate now

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