In addition to continuing their parent’s legacy and work, the Foundation’s objectives is to develop synergistic partnerships and global alliances that enhance the lives and living conditions of Colombian citizens, particularly of the disadvantaged and underprivileged communities.
Education and culture for co-existence and peace
We support non-formal education programs for vulnerable and at-risk populations designed to improve their opportunities for employment, enhance their economic and social conditions, and develop their skills for peaceful co-existence.
The Francisco Hope Houses (CAFE)
This is a program of the Peace and Wellbeing Foundation oriented to high social risk boys, girls and adolescents. This program seeks to repair the social exclusion they experience in less favored areas of the city where this intervention takes place. Work is focused on strengthening family ties and on the application of Restorative Justice in their relationships among themselves and the community.
The program is focused on preventing boys, girls and adolescents from joining armed gangs and participating in urban violence as it protects them from a breakdown of their basic rights. Equally, it offers alternatives for education, training, cultural and sport opportunities and, for those over 18 years of age, orientation towards the work market, supported by Local Government and the business sector.
The program operates in Communes #13, #14, and #15 in the District of Aguablanca, a depressed area of the city, and in Commune #21 of the Desepaz City District, in Cali. It also operates in Buenaventura and Cartago, other cities in the state of Valle del Cauca. Currently it encompasses 150 boys, girls and adolescents in Cali whose ages range from 8 to 25 years.
The Francisco Hope Restorative Houses received first prize among 139 organizations that is carrried out annually by the “For a Better Cali Program”. The jury considered that this project has rescued hundreds of children and adolescents from death, drug addiction and violence. The support received by those benefitted has allowed these young people to keep their lives on a straight path, and carry on as good citizens with dignified life projects.
The District of Aguablanca and the Desepaz City District are two of the poorest sectors of Cali, the third city in size of Colombia, where over 650,000 people live, according to the 2005 census. The majority of the population is displaced persons arriving in a steady stream for the past 15 years, running from violence or seeking better economic opportunities, yet find themselves in an unhospitable environment where violence, delinquency and gangs, added to an accumulation of unsatisfied basic needs, become part of their day to day existence.
These displaced families, generally consisting of an average of five members, are forced to move into low level social interest housing in spaces that are barely adequate for two persons. In addition, this group presents a high index of unemployment and urban violence, where boys, girls and adolescents are victimized, or become involved in conflict in its various aspects. The most frequent problems are substance abuse, carrying weapons, early joining in gangs and contracted murderers-for-hire. This harsh reality is a call to construct a more equitative and pacific society which can be accomplished by processes of citizen inclusion and generating opportunities for work and income, and this applies not only for whose born in Cali, but for everyone who inhabits the city.