Providing jobs in the conflict-affected communities in Colombia – global issues

For Melida Montero, coffee is more than a drink. This is a way of life. “I’ve always grown coffee; my parents and grandparents have always grown coffee. I raised my children for coffee. Coffee is at my roots; it is given to me in life.

Miss. Montero lives in El Tambo, Cauca, a region of Colombia that was particularly affected by the conflict until the signing of the peace agreement in August 2016. Prior to that, local communities, especially women, struggled to create a steady source of income for their households.

The economic recovery of these regions has been a key part of this agreement and Peacebuilding Fund (PBF), the United Nations financial instrument for peacekeeping in countries at risk or affected by violent conflict, is funding an innovative, one-of-a-kind initiative through Colombia’s 2018 Multipartner Trust Fund for Peacekeeping.

The persistence of ’50 Amigas’

As a result, 50 women, all heads of households and coffee producers in El Tambo, are empowered to start their own businesses and gain direct access to promote their coffee internationally.

Trained in marketing and equipped with technical knowledge in the production of organic coffee, these women coffee makers have developed their own brand of organic roasted coffee, “50 Amigas – Valiant collective”, presenting the rich history of the Caucasus Mountains and the perseverance of its women. The small-scale coffee production of their brand has helped them significantly improve their income.

“I managed to give my children everything for the coffee. We are not rich, but we always have food. And I can support other family members when they need it, ”she said. Montero, who is happy to be from the 50’s Amiga.

“We are fighters. we do not give up

“We take care of the planet and our own farm. It makes me feel so proud, “said Argentis Rosas, another member of the team. “I also teach my children to take care of the environment. I like what I do. We are working on the use of solar energy on the farm and we are composting. ”

With the use of an online digital platform, the entire coffee production process is 100 percent traceable and transparent. The platform also helps connect women producers with the US market and ultimately with other markets around the world.

“These 50 Amigas, we are fighters. We do not give up. The UN is helping me make my dreams come true. Thank you for believing in us, ”she said. Rosas.

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