What if the education system that you grow up in is weakened and doesn’t meet requirements? If unemployment among young adults increases continually and there is a high risk of young people drifting into gangs and drug dealing networks because of a lack of serious alternatives? Unimaginable? Not in the Montebello neighbourhood of Cali, Colombia.

After the peace agreement was signed by the Colombian government and FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) it became possible to actively work towards sustainable development and lasting peace in Colombia. Children and young people can be offered a better future, free of violence. Unfortunately, the Colombian education system has been weakened and does not meet the requirements of the pupils. Unemployment among young people is rising. There is a high risk of young people drifting into gangs and drug dealing networks because of a lack of serious alternatives. Furthermore, the prevalence of violence means Cali is one of the most dangerous cities in Colombia.

A peaceful future through sport and play

Through an interactive, sport and play based approach, SAD provides youngsters who are at risk with high-quality vocational education and business know-how. This enables them to develop the skills needed for playing an active part in the reconstruction of a peaceful, forward-looking civil society. The youngsters improve their employment prospects, thereby escaping the influence of gang crime and violence.

Taking career prospects into their own hands

Together with local partner organisation Grupo Internacional de Paz, SAD provides children and young people who are not supported by the state system with access to basic and vocational education in the Las Aguas integrational training centre. SAD trains the teachers in teaching business skills in an interactive manner and adapting them to the needs of the local economy. The project thereby creates a basis for the young people to find a job or set up their own business.