The AVP program in Colombia is PLA’s longest-running program and has included five regions: Bogotá/Central, Atlantic coast, Northeast, Occident and Medellín. From 2006 to 2016, AVP Colombia completed over 300 workshops, impacting more than 2,500 participants. Youth have been a priority population for AVP Colombia as well as victims of the armed violence, 75% of whom are women. Workshops continue with communities in indigenous and Afro-Colombian territories located in the coastal and southwestern regions rich in natural resources.
In 2018, PLA expanded to Ecuador, working for the first time with Jambi Mascari, an indigenous Kichwa women´s organization in the Andes. This project will train Kichwa-speaking indigenous women leaders as AVP Facilitators to work with women and youth in their communities. In the face of extreme racism, economic marginalization, cultural discrimination, and domestic violence, the indigenous women of Jambi Mascari exhibit strong leadership locally and nationally as advocates for indigenous rights and cultural survival. They represent larger Andean indigenous movements that resist aggressive models of economic development threatening their natural resources and spiritual-cultural traditions.
This partnership reflects PLA´s commitment to support women´s agency, respect indigenous cultures and languages, and strengthen social movements in the region. PLA accompanies other indigenous communities facing multiple forms of violence across Guatemala, Colombia and Honduras.