Innovation in the field: Red Colunga for overcoming poverty

May 17, 2019
Communications Colunga Foundation

Contributing to overcoming poverty in children and adolescents, is part of the purpose of Fundación Colunga and the various organizations that make up its network.

Photo: América Solidaria.

According to data provided by the Casen 2017 Survey, 949 thousand children and adolescents live in multidimensional poverty, representing 22.9% of the country's infant population. A fact that continues to worry, considering that, compared to 23.3% in 2015, there is a decline of only 0.4 points.

In the last seven years, Fundación Colunga has supported more than 120 organizations that work collaboratively in the task of generating better opportunities for the most vulnerable sector of the population. Today there is a large number of organizations that know and work in the field to protect children in Chile and Latin America. An example of this is Fútbol Más, America Solidaria and Abrazarte Foundation.

An integrative hug

At the beginning of May of this year, the National Count of Children and Adolescents in Street Situation 2018, of the Ministry of Social Development and SENAME, revealed that at least 547 minors live in this condition. Reality that seeks to transform Abrazarte Foundation, which since 2008 works directly with adolescents who have been excluded from the education system and who have abandoned programs of protection and reception of the State.

Today its focus is to strengthen the leveling of studies for young people in street situation and are with the preparations to begin with the construction of their day center "Holistic School Abrazarte" In her, they will be able to attend in an integral way the basic needs in mental health and social skills of their beneficiaries.

"Civil society has a very important role in raising the shortcomings that the State can not reach or address with time. Without the pressure that we make as specialists in childhood and the testimonies that have emerged, it is very difficult for the different governments to direct the changes to the policies we have today, "says Marta Ibacache, Executive Director of the foundation, on the role that have fulfilled foundations that work these problems.

Photo: Abrazarte Foundation.

Sport is the medium

Football More For more than 11 years, he has been using the values of sport as a tool for the articulation and empowerment of communities, working directly with his local governments. Convinced that creating better organized environments achieve safer environments for children in situations of vulnerability, the work of Fútbol Más is to strengthen the different actors that belong to their environments.

"We want to provide life skills in children, which can serve them in their academic, work and family life. We are trying to cover the emotional malnutrition of the country and not many people talk about it, "says Víctor Gutiérrez, Executive Director of Fútbol Más.

They currently have a presence in 11 regions, in addition to reaching 8 countries, including Ecuador, France, Haiti and Peru. His work is not only local, but also on a continental level. Today they work on the scalability of their program "The party of my neighborhood", Which will allow the creation of a network of organizations in Renca and Huechuraba. This phase is supported by the Colunga 2018 Strengthening Fund.

Photo: Football More.

Field articulation

Experts in the field work is the team of America Solidaria. In their constant desire to unite all the pieces involved in overcoming child poverty, they arrive in 2010 at the Colunga network to expand the impact they have in the countries where they are present.

Today his mission is not so different from his beginnings. "Our job is to bring the reality we see in the field to decision-making spaces and public opinion. We have the task of working professionally and expertly in spaces where public policy does not reach or, if it arrives, to reinforce it, "says Waleska Ureta, Social Director of the subsidiary in Chile.

At present, two of its programs stand out. The first, an alliance with the Jesuit Migrant Service (SJM) in the initiative "Migration and Classroom", That seeks to sensitize the educational spaces for a more integral reception to migrant children. On the other hand, they are working on a project with caregivers of direct treatment, preparing a book of stories written by them in order to highlight their work with children in vulnerable contexts.  

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