IRI Colombia begins second phase of training through local chapters

On 25 February, the local chapters of IRI Puerto Guzmán (urban), IRI Santa Lucía, IRI Nueva Unión (rural), IRI Puerto Asís (urban), IRI El Águila and IRI Vegas Piñuña Blanco (department of Putumayo) began the second phase of their training process. More than 50 religious, indigenous, political, social and environmental leaders participated in the training process of IRI Puerto Guzmán and rural IRI of Santa Lucía and Nueva Unión, while 68 participated in the training process of IRI-Puerto Asis and rural IRI of El Aguila and Vegas Piñuña Blanco. Participants analyzed concepts and methodologies for the design and implementation of actions aimed at raising awareness of the deforestation crisis and inspiring action to prevent it. They also conducted a workshop to identify and plan appropriate strategies for action to promote change in defense of forests and advocate for their restoration. Religious leaders defined concrete actions to take during 2021 and made a commitment to carry them out with their faith communities.  The workshop included refinement of the general action plans they developed last year, now using a territorial approach and a strategic change perspective. The second phase of training is designed to build environmental citizenship and contribute to the protection and restoration of Colombia’s forests. The training puts equal emphasis on the theological, scientific, ethical and legal dimensions of citizen participation and action for forests.  Training will continue this week in the municipalities of San José del Guaviare, Calamar, El Retorno and Miraflores (department of Guaviare) and in the municipality of La Macarena (department of Meta) and will extend in two phases / semesters to all 36 local chapters across the country.