Ryan Knox visits Colombia and the FOINCIDE Project
Ryan Knox, Managing Director at SALAR International, visited Colombia to follow up on the work of the FOINCIDE Project and signed a Memorandum of Understanding with an important Colombian partner for the peace-accord implementation, the Agency for the Renovation of Territory (ART)
Since 2016 SALAR International and the FOINCIDE project, financed by the Swedish embassy, has worked together with Colombian municipalities to strengthen the capacities of local governments in managing complex challenges, and providing learning experiences, practical tools, and resources in citizen dialogue, conflict management, territorial statistics, and gender. During this first week of October, Ryan Knox attended the final seminar for 6 of the 15 pilot municipalities that have been working with FOINCIDE. During this seminar the achievements and the hard work of Tierralta y Puerto Libertador in Córdoba, La Jagua de Ibirico in César, Fonseca in LaGuajira, San Pedro in Urabá, Necoclí y Chigorodó in Antioquia was celebrated.
“Through this event, we have observed the excellent work of 6 partner municipalities in adopting participatory dialogue where communities play a role in identifying, discussing and overcoming specific local challenges in a range of fields. These initiatives have ensured the building of trust in local institutions, with multiple benefits in terms of efficiency and accountability. While only a first step, the testimonies of our partners and the communities they serve, indicate that they can be deployed for much wider uses including local development planning and conflict resolution”, says Ryan Knox.
Furthermore, in the presence of representatives from the Swedish Embassy in Colombia the managing director of SALAR International signed the MOU together with ART, which will allow this set of experiences, knowledge tools, and resources to continue to support Colombian municipalities. ART will continue the work and in that way SALAR International will keep supporting the peace implementation accord and the institutional strengthening of the municipalities in Colombia that have the greatest needs.
“I am very happy to be in Colombia following up on the excellent work of our FOINCIDE team. The signing of this MoU with our partner la Agencia de Renovacion del Territorio represents an important step, given our efforts to institutionalise the wide-ranging tools that have been developed to support evidence-based and participatory planning by local authorities in Colombia“ , says Ryan Knox.
Agency for the Renovation of Territory (ART)
The Agency for the Renovation of Territory (ART in Spanish) belongs to the Colombian government at the national level. Their mission is to support and assist municipalities with the most pressing issues in the country, those most deeply affected by the armed conflict, illegal economies and other challenges.