Implementing the Peace Agreements by Supporting Ex-coca Growers

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Implementing the Peace Agreements by Supporting Ex-coca Growers

The Technical Secretariat of the UN Multi-Partner Trust Fund for Sustaining Peace in Colombia visited the Contingency Plan that is being implemented by PASO Colombia in the Rural Reserve Zone of the Amazon Pearl. The Amazon Pearl Reserve Zone is located in municipality of Puerto Asis (Putumayo), on the banks of the Cuembí River, and inhabited by approximately 800 families. The representatives of the UN Trust Fund talked with the beneficiaries of the project, verified its progress, and highlighted their experience in their newsletter.

This Contingency Plan covers 10 municipalities of the departments of Putumayo, Guaviare, Valle de Cauca, Norte de Santander, Antioquia and Meta. It supports at least 24,000 people from 2,000 families associated with the governmental National Comprehensive Program for the Substitution of Crops Used for Illicit Purposes (PNIS). The participating communities identify the strategic areas in which they can focus their collective efforts in order to strengthen productive and commercial networks that offer viable alternatives to illegal economies. They are then trained and hired to work on building collective infrastructures, generating new markets for their products, and strengthening productive processes and organizations. With at least 80% of the participants being women, the project prioritizes a strong gender approach by offering child care initiatives to help women be fully involved.  

With this Plan, PASO is helping to turn into reality the fourth chapter of the Final Agreement to End the Armed Conflict, called “Solution to the illicit drugs problem.”  The Plan also helps to promote collaboration between ex-combatants and families that have decided to substitute illicit crops.