Land tenure and sustainable economic empowerment in Colombia

Kadaster collaborates with ICCO Colombia and Tropenbos Colombia, two NGOs specialised in economic empowerment and responsible natural resources management. The project is part of the LAND-at-Scale programme of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO).

Indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities 

Although the number of people with customary rights is diminishing worldwide, the areas covered by customary rights are vast and often under lots of pressure from rising global demand for natural resources. This raises conflict and debate. Most indigenous groups have great difficulty in adjusting to a rapidly changing world. While technologies such as cell phones, internet and motorcycles create conditions for connecting with the wider world. Traditional economic practices, including fishing, hunting, and slash-and-burn agriculture, often do not provide sustainable incomes. Other economic opportunities are scarce, and many youngsters choose to escape the poverty trap by working in illegal coca production, or by joining guerrilla or narco gangs.

Post conflict areas need sustainable empowerment 

Indigenous, Afro-Colombian and peasant communities are amongst the most vulnerable groups in Colombia. In post-conflict areas where these communities are often located, a new equilibrium between power seeking groups is still to be established. The situation, especially in rural areas, is far from stable and government involvement remains low. It is precisely in these areas that we started  an integrated project linking land tenure, economic empowerment, and responsible natural resources management. 

Establish the reserve of the Arhuaco in Gunmaku in Colombia, for example

Gunmaku is not an official indigenous reserve. It is a large parcel that the Arhuaco bought from surrounding informal farmers. Until now, no map is available of the repurchased parcels. That spatial information is known by elderly community members, but not by the youngsters, nor by outsiders. 
The Minister of Agriculture, the National Land Agency and the governor of the Arhuaco community and Kadaster agreed last February 2022, to train the youngsters of Gunmaku to measure their own land. 
Watch the video - made by the youth of Gunmaku themselves on page: Gunmaku Colombia.

More info and contact

If you want more information about the project or if you want to contact us, please fill in the contact form.