Afro-Colombian Solidarity Campaign
Black Lives Matter and the Afro-Colombian Solidarity Network Fundraising Campaign
in Support of the Ancestral Black Communities of La Toma in Northern Cauca, Colombia
The Afro-Colombian Solidarity Network and Black Lives Matter are initiating a fundraising campaign in solidarity with black communities in Cauca, Colombia. We are calling on you to support the efforts of the courageous leaders and community of La Toma in Northern Cauca. Since 2009, the community of La Toma has experienced ever growing threats to their territory and livelihoods. The people of La Toma have worked in traditional mining and safeguarded their environment for nearly four centuries. Today, despite various constitutional protections including the right to collective ownership of their ancestral lands, the community is experiencing massacres, sexual violence, forced displacement and constant death threats by armed paramilitary groups.
We ask for your solidarity, both financial and spiritual, in helping the community raise US $25,000 to support two important community projects.
Your support will go toward two efforts that have been vital for the local struggle in La Toma:
Aiding the Black Women’s Movement in Defense of Life and the Ancestral Territories in developing a community radio station;
Helping to purchase a truck to carry out a self-sustainable agricultural program. The goal of the agricultural program is to strengthen the bonds between rural black communities and displaced black community members in the city, by building access to organic, community-grown vegetables and fruits at affordable prices.
This fundraiser is your opportunity to make the expression “another world is possible” real.
Like in the US, Black communities in Colombia are facing death, on multiple dimensions. Please seize this opportunity to support the struggle and solidarity building efforts of the Global Black Family.
La Red de Solidaridad Afro-Colombiana (ACSN) y Las Vidas Negras Importan están iniciando una campaña de recaudación de fondos en solidaridad con las comunidades negras de La Toma, Norte del Cauca, Colombia. Convocamos su apoyo a los esfuerzos de la valiente comunidad de La Toma y sus líderes y lideresas en el Norte del Cauca. Desde el 2009, la comunidad de La Toma ha vivido las crecientes amenazas a sus territorios y sus vidas. La gente de La Toma ha trabajado la minería tradicional y cuidado del medio ambiente por cuatro siglos. Hoy, a pesar de varias protecciones constitucionales, incluyendo el derecho a la titulación colectiva de sus territorios ancestrales, la comunidad está sobreviviendo masacres, violencia sexual, desplazamiento forzado y amenazas de muerte constantes por parte de grupos armados paramilitares.
Pedimos su solidaridad espiritual y financiera para apoyar a la comunidad a recaudar US $25,000 para apoyar dos proyectos comunitarios muy importante.
Su apoyo ayudara dos esfuerzos vitales para la lucha local en La Toma:
1) Asistir al Movimiento de Mujeres Negras en Defensa de la Vida y Los Territorios Ancestrales a desarrollar una estación de radio comunitaria
2) Ayudar a comprar un camión para desempeñar un programa de agricultura auto-sostenible. La meta del programa agrícola es fortaleces los vínculos entre las comunidades negras rurales y las personas de la comunidad desplazadas en la ciudad, a través de proveer acceso a vegetales y frutas orgánicos, sembrados y cosechados por la comunidad, a precios al alcance de las comunidades.
Esta campaña de recaudación de fondos es su oportunidad de hacer realidad la expresión “otro mundo es posible”.
Tanto como en los Estados Unidos, las Comunidades Negras en Colombia se están enfrentando a violencia estatal en muchas dimensiones. Por favor aproveche esta oportunidad para apoya la lucha y los esfuerzos de crear solidaridad con la Familia Negra Global.
Colombia Land Monitor, website
The Association of Afro-descendant Women of Yolombó(ASOMUAFROYO) would like to express our profound thanks to all of those who supported us in the fundraising drive launched last year to collect funds in solidarity with the women of Yolombó. Your generosity touched us and we are profoundly grateful. We would also like to thank the US Black Lives Matter Movement and the Afro-Colombian Solidarity Network (ACSN) who organized the fundraising campaign last year.
ASOMUAFROYO is an entity that was born out of our daily experiences of exclusion, discrimination, and threats of forced displacement stemming from the violence that accompanies the economic interests that have been violating the ancestral, ethnic, political, economic, and environmental rights of the Afro-Colombian communities that inhabit the Afro-descendant Community Council of La Toma, and more specifically, the rights of the Afro-descendant women of these communities.
We would like to thank everyone that decided to contribute to the campaign with the goal of supporting our work as black women who take care of life and our ancestral territories. Your contributions, which totalled $7,022 US dollars and $18.000.000 Colombian Pesos, was a tremendous amount.
Once the organizers of the fundraising campaign sent the monies to the legal representative of ASOMUAFROYO, we organized a community gathering to inform the community of the success of the campaign and to finalize the process of selecting and purchasing a vehicle to transport the community’s agricultural products.
Unfortunately, as part of the many consequences of a number of Colombia Free Trade Agreements, the cost of new vehicles has skyrocketed to over $40.000.000 COL Pesos. Therefore, we must communicate that at this point we have not been able to purchase the vehicle. Nonetheless, ASOMUAFROYO continues to safeguard every penny you’ve donated in the bank account of our non-profit organization, and we determined to use those funds solely for the purpose of purchasing the appropriate vehicle. We continue to work to generate the remaining funds, including requesting matching funds from State and National development authorities. We will keep you informed on these developments as they move forward.
We also thought it was important to inform you that ASOMUAFROYO continues its work of organizing social, economic, political, cultural, and environmental activities that promote the strengthening of our community’s organizing and the revindication of the ethnoterritorial rights of the Afro-Colombian communities of La Toma, in the Northern Cauca, and in the country in general; specifically it completes activities of Organizational Strengthening of Afrodescendant, Palenque and Raizal Black Women.
We have been working on the following activities:
Training women and the community at large around ethnic rights.
-Trainings on the rights of women and the care of life in our ancestral territories.
-Advancing productive campaigns such as the creation of farm lots of traditional foods developed by the women of the community with the goal of guaranteeing the food sovereignty of their families and obtain economic gains.
-Promoting the organizations of women so that they have the tools to demand respect of their rights from the national government.
-Activities that advance and build the peace process with a differential ethnic focus.
-We are identifying other productive plots of land to establish women-led community farms not only in
-Yolombo, but in 5 municipalities in the Northern Cauca; We are planning this as a mechanism of resisting the illegal and unconstitutional mining that is destroying our territories.
-The black women of Northern Cauca, caretakers of life and the ancestral territories are immensely thankful for your solidarity. We hope you do not lose faith in our ongoing process of liberation. We continue to work very hard to generate the remaining funds necessary to purchase the transport vehicle.
Please know that you contribution is immensely significant, that it continues to be safeguarded, and that it will be used for its intended purpose once we have completed securing the remaining necessary funds.
Francia Elena Márquez Mina
Association of Afro-descendant Women of Yolombó
We Are Giving Birth to the Liberty for our Peoples
Thank you all for your donations and support. We are working to wrap up this campaign on September 15th and really need your support during this last week of fundraising.
Please donate what you can and share the link to those who may be able to help us reach our new goal of $8,000.00
Gratitude and solidarity.