Helping Colombia on its Road to Peace
To help the Government of Colombia and civil society implement the country’s peace accords that were ratified in 2016, we are implementing a project known as Transforma.
It is part of USAID’s Office of Transition Initiatives mechanism called Support Which Implements Fast Transitions (SWIFT), a mechanism that allows us to improve the Colombian government’s ability to create fast change in rural communities, promote collaboration, and mitigate destabilizing tensions.
Our team facilitates flexible, short-term grants to local organizations for rehabilitation, irrigation, social gatherings, and training. Transforma has managed more than 300 small grant activities in communities that are now at the forefront of the peace process. We worked with government staff to meet with community members, draft work plans, and help implement targeted projects that showed rapid government response.
We have also helped facilitate dozens of interagency roundtables that allowed the government to produce the framework plan for implementing the accord.
Grassroots community action boards, comprised of residents in the targeted areas, have been established to facilitate citizen participation in governance. In addition, our team has trained more than 2,600 local leaders in how the peace accord affects their communities and how to manage community resources effectively. Through mentorship exchanges among 600 community leaders, best practices were shared to accelerate the adoption of proven, relevant, and successful activities from other regions.
Other activities are connecting more than 5,800 Colombians with pathways to receive transitional justice and services such as reclaiming land, and connecting them with government staff or officials to help facilitate the process.