August 3, 2017

Community organizations trained in the General Royalties System and its differential analysis component

Cerrejón and its Foundations System, as part of the “Development of skills in formulating projects and self-management of indigenous and non-indigenous communities for their empowerment in the solution of their needs” program, conducted a workshop with Juan Carabalí Ospina, an expert on the General Royalties System and its differential analysis component.

The workshop was attended by 200 individuals from 12 community associations and organizations neighbouring the operations of the mine and railway line. “We want to express our gratitude for this thoughtful gesture of training us and keeping our concerns in mind in all the actions and activities they carry out. The training is of great importance for us, as indigenous peoples, because we can then take into account and recognize things that we do not know and the things we do have. We can strengthen them and get things off the ground, handle the negative things and convert them into something positive,” remarked Alexis Vergara Pérez, a member of the La Horqueta community.

“These kinds of skills are very important for us because it is a great support of major importance, to be able to learn and know what to do with our projects in this way,” declared Modesta Velásquez of the AIWA Association. The goal of the workshop was to create high-quality training that would allow the organizations to be aware of the financial tools awarded to minority ethnic communities to manage investment projects related to the OCAD at all its different levels.

“We came here intending to increase knowledge of the differential analysis of the General Royalties System. We found some groups with a very high level of knowledge regarding the technical planning of projects. It should be taken into account that the foundations must continue working so that individuals become a bit more aware of what their rights are under the General Royalties System and can take part in the decision-making process,” stated Juan Carabalí, an expert instructor on the General Royalties System.

The community organizations and associations attending the workshop were: AIWA, La Horqueta, Campo Alegre, Barrancón, Santa Fe, Campo Herrera, and Piturumana I and II. In addition, the indigenous reservations of El Cerro, Trupiogacho, San Francisco, Provincial, and 4 de Noviembre also benefited from the workshop, having actively participated since 2014 in the process of creating skills for empowerment and self-management.

Cerrejón will continue working to develop skills among the communities, targeted at promoting self-management and Project planning by indigenous and non-indigenous communities alike. These efforts will unfold through actions and activities involving training and ongoing support that contribute to the sustainable development of these communities.