In 2011, huge peasant marches were organized throughout the country and the Peasant Association of the Cimitarra River Valley (ACVC) had an important role. For 23 years, ACVC has been working in the holistic defense of human rights, to protect the environment, fight for land tenure and land redistribution, a dignified life for peasants, and women’s participation in political and economic affairs. In the context of this work, and due to the numerous attacks, accusations, and direct threats, PBI began accompanying the ACVC in 2007.
After being awarded the National Peace Prize in 2010, ACVC decided to promote “Dialogue is the Way,” a peace gathering which convened all the social, grassroots, peasant, indigenous, and Afro-descendant organizations in Colombia to discuss peace proposals for Colombia. Over 32,000 people participated in the gathering, which was held in August 2011, in the oil port of Barrancabermeja (Santander).
Since the Peace Agreement’s signature ACVC has been working on peace education programs and a promotion of the National Comprehensive Program for the Substitution of Illicit Crops (PNIS), in addition to having an important role in the Development Programs with a Territorial Approach (PDET). In addition, the ACVC participates in the creation of proposals and programs for the defense of defenders in the Magdalena Medio, among other efforts.
In recognition of their important work in pro of peasant rights and the defense of the environment this year, ACVC won the Diakonia award in the category of “Collective experience or process – social process.”