Colombia

In Pereira, Colombia, Inter-Cultur is supporting the work of a local non-profit organization of IWOKA. The project is organized in order to support Pereira’s underprivileged areas’ schools, where hundreads of children are benefitting from the support of IWOKA’s experts. The children are offered an opportunity to improve skills for their future careers. The purpose of the project is to develop solutions to societal issues that concern the children and youth. Most of the beneficiaries come from a background of domestic violence, drugs or gang activities. The project of Inter-Cultur and IWOKA aims to ensure the continuity of education and therefore improve their living conditions and work opportunities in the future.

The beneficiaries of the project are primary school children of different ages, who act as support persons for each other. The beneficiaries include 230 middle-schoolers and 670 primary-schoolers. The program includes peer support, mentoring and help for school work related challenges. IWOKA organizes training for 9th and 10th graders, who then help the primary school students with school work. Every older student is responsible for a group of 3-4 people, where the focus is – in addition to school work – in themes of friendship and respect. The older students of the project are carefully chosen so that they are suitable role models for the younger students.

Thanks to the project, aggressiveness among the students has decreased. In addition, the project has enabled a promotion of an atmosphere of support and safety. The pupils’ grades have improved, sexual harrassment and bullying have decreased and the relations between students and teachers have got better. The support offered for school work tries to ensure that the drop-out rate stays low. IWOKA’s and Inter-Cultur's project’s impact is evaluated by a Swiss organization Swissocial. According to Swissocial the project’s vision is progressive and they have praised the project’s ability to utilize the focus group of the social issue in solving the issue itself.

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