Tetra Tech is helping support a sustainable, lasting peace and open, participatory society in Colombia through institutional capacity building and community outreach activities focused on areas most affected by the protracted conflict.
After decades of conflict with insurgency groups, the Government of Colombia ratified its final peace accord in 2016. To support inclusive, sustainable reforms necessary for lasting peace, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), selected MSI, A Tetra Tech Company, to support the Colombia Transforma project to increase the ability of the Colombian government and civil society to implement the country’s peace accords.
Through the Colombia Transforma project, USAID aims to improve the Colombian government’s ability to plan and execute rapid response in the peace process, promote collaboration between the various factions to lead local implementation of the peace accords, and mitigate destabilizing tensions that threaten the peace process.
Under the Transforma project, Tetra Tech has helped facilitate 30 interagency roundtables that allowed the Colombian government to produce the framework plan for implementing the accord. Our team also has managed more than 300 small grant activities in Arauca, Putumayo, and Norte de Santander—three communities that were greatly impacted by the prior conflict and are now at the forefront of the peace process. Grants support the peace accords through activities including rehabilitation, irrigation, social gatherings, and training. Our team used its global experience in empowering local partners to advance representative and accountable governance that is essential for equitable economic growth, social development, and peace. We worked with government staff to meet with community members, draft work plans, and help implement targeted projects that showed rapid government response.
To achieve the Transforma project’s objectives, Tetra Tech implemented grassroots community action boards comprised of local residents in the targeted areas to facilitate citizen participation in governance. In addition, our team has trained more than 2,600 local leaders in how the peace accord affects their communities and how to manage community resources effectively. Through mentorship exchanges, Tetra Tech provided 600 community leaders the opportunity to share best practices with their peers to accelerate the adoption of proven, relevant, and successful activities from other regions of Colombia.
Colombia Transforma’s impact at the local level includes facilitating government services in conflict-affected areas through mobile peace and justice fairs, which bring government staff into remote areas that had a severe lack of services in the past. These fairs have connected more than 5,800 Colombians with pathways to receive transitional justice. This effort provides communities with a greater understanding of the peace process by helping them apply for services, such as reclaiming land, and connecting them with government staff or officials to help facilitate the process. Colombia Transforma is working to increase the involvement of citizens in governance with the ultimate goal of promoting peace in Colombia.