Building peace from Colombian universities


An article from Fundacion Escuelas de Paz, reprinted by the Global Campaign for Peace Education

“Peacebuilders” is a program that seeks the integral formation of 1,200 university students in Colombia, involved in the scholarship program “Dreams of Peace” of Bancolombia Foundation, in knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes conducive to building Cultures of Peace.

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Peacebuilders is carried out by Escuelas de Paz (Schools of Peace) Foundation based on the six components proposed by UNESCO in the 2000 manifesto for a culture of peace and non-violence. Also it works on the six pillars raised by the methodology of education for peace, known as “The Flower for the Culture of Peace”. Finally, as a transversal axis the Guiding Principles of UN Secretary General on the Participation of Youth in Peace Building were taken.

These participants will implement impact actions on their university communities through collective nonviolent actions that enable a more just society. Due to the national situation of peace talks between the government and the FARC guerrilla in Havana, Cuba, it was formed a group of 70 students leaders in building and advocacy of cultures of peace, historical memory and reconciliation, with capabilities for replication in the next semesters and to design and implement new actions for peace within the institutions in which they were formed.

In a first stage, 320 students have been trained in three cities in the country: Bogotá D.C, Cartagena y Manizales since July 2015. The scholarship program of Bancolombia Foundation is an initiative developed from the line of social management of Bancolombia, who have an interest in developing a program of high social impact, which aims to provide resources and conditions that allow students with specific characteristics as vulnerable conditions, to access to higher education in technical, technological and university programs nationwide.

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