Roofs For the Slums of Medellin

$100,000 goal

Campaign created 8 months ago
What you see on television about Colombia is about as far off as one can get.  Medellin, Colombia used to be the murder capital of the world.  It used to be the drug cartel capital of the world.  But today, many things are different.

 

I am fortunate enough to have been to Medellin, Colombia on several occasions, for my job in the beverage industry. At first I was scared to go.  I watched all the interesting but awful drug cartel movies and television shows and that is the world I expected to see.  I was shocked by what I saw. Medellin is my favorite city in the entire world.  It is beautiful and the people are some of the nicest people I have ever met.

 

After many, many years of civil war between the government, FARC, and Para Military forces, Colombia signed a peace treaty a little less than two years ago. The government has worked very hard to bring the people of the slums back to the forefront of society and the workforce.  And these are not the normal slums or ghettos that one sees in the United States.  These slums are much worse than most Americans have ever seen.

 

Many of the slums in Medellin are in the valley between the mountains. Years ago, it would literally take someone living in the ghettos 10 hours and multiple buses to get to and from work, just several miles away. 

 

In 2011, the government installed a $7 million outside elevator which now brings the people of the slums above to the rest of the city.  The ride to the top is free and only takes seven minutes.

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Prior to the outdoor escalators, in 2004, the government installed aerial trams carry people from the mountaintop slums to the subway system, giving them access to the rest of the city.

The cable cars and the subway now takes 45 minutes rather than two-and-a-half hours.


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The Wall Street Journal, Citi, and the Washington-based Urban Land Institute named Medellin, along with New York City and Tel Aviv, Israel as the one of the world’s most innovative cities. Today, the crime rate is lower than most major cities in the United States.  In fact, to this writer, there is very little difference between the crime in the United States and Medellin.  One should not walk through a “bad” neighborhood in any major city throughout the world.  Yet, today, the crime rate of Medellin is less than the crime rate of cities like Baltimore and St. Louis.

 

So if everything is going so well, why this article?  Although things are always getting better in Medellin, one can not help but notice that the slums in Medellin are much worse than the slums in most American cities.  The worst slums look more like shanty towns than slums.  Homes often do not have a roof throughout the building.  And if there are roofs, they are simply placed metal sheets that leak when it rains.  The roofs barely protect people from the sun, the heat, or especially the rain. And that is where good people can help.

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I started a Go Fund Me page to raise money to build roofs in the slums of Medellin.  All the money will be used to buy the necessary materials and the installation of the new roofs.  This will be nothing fancy but will protect the people from the elements of the weather.  No one should have to live without a real roof or having water rain down on their heads during a storm. Our initial goal is to raise $100,000.00 dollars.  We believe we can install 75-100 roofs for that price. At least that is our goal. I am asking you to donate money, whatever you can afford, $5, $10, $20, etc. to help us build roofs in the slums of Medellin and to make our world a better place, one roof at a time.

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$100,000 goal

Campaign created 8 months ago
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