As in the past, the ceremony took place in the auditorium Roque Morelli of the Magdalena University on July 12, 2014. The program welcomed Alvaro Flores, an old contributor to the work of Fundehumac and the Magdalena Foundation scholars.
Alvaro has worked for many years in areas inhabited by indigenous people from the Sierra Nevada and has helped organized workshops with the different ethnic groups in the region and Fundehumac. He is 36 years old and knows the problems and issues that affect the National Park and its people. He has worked on contracts with the Department of Social Prosperity which reports to the office of the President of Colombia and lives most of his time in the national park. However, because he does not have a university degree he cannot secure a permanent and just job. He asked for help to study anthropology and passed the college entrance examination. He should graduate in 2018 or the beginning of 2019.
Some scholars talked about their experience with the foundations and how their lives have improved under Fundehumac’s guidance, the complexities of working with some parents who do not support their children but reported some gains with the children’s behavior and academic progress.
Karina Escalante, a graduate scholar who works with a chain store that sells books and general stationery, reported how her experience during her studies changed her life and made her a better and assertive person. At the end of the year, she contributes boxes of notebooks and pencils to the program.
MFI students performed with songs and dance about peace in the company of some children of Paso a Paso. The search for peace is the top priority of the government and organizations such as Fundehumac. MFI scholars make important contributions to this endeavor. They participate and represent the city and the department at national gatherings, on behalf of Fundehumac.
As always, the ceremony was a good experience and concluded in a harmonious note.
Haroldo L. Suarez