Global Reach: Grantee Partners

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Fundacion Alvaralice


While the national unemployment rate in Colombia in 2017 was 10.6% , it was higher among young people ages 14-28 (15.9%), especially young women (20.8%). One factor is that young people overall lack technical expertise required for the increasingly specialized labour market. This general lack of skills means they are only able to find temporary/low paying work, which rarely leads to long-term employment. Still, in the most vulnerable sectors of Cali, many youth are expected to contribute to their household’s income. Without viable job prospects, many young people turn to criminal groups and gangs, which offer them an easy and lucrative way to make money. Women face the additional challenge of gender discrimination because many professions are traditionally thought of for males, consigning women to jobs in the informal sector that provide less security and pay.


The Alvaralice Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 2003 in Cali, Colombia, by the Garcés Echavarría siblings in honor of the civic and philanthropic spirit of their parents, Álvaro Garcés Giraldo and Alice Echavarría Olózaga. The organization is committed to a more inclusive and peaceful Colombian society. Since its creation, the Alvaralice Foundation has stood out for developing a model of public-private partnerships that has managed to mobilize resources from the public, private and international cooperation sectors to support and boost projects of regional and national impact aimed at improving living conditions of the communities. The organization’s crowning achievement was the development of the We Are Peaceful Cultural Technocenter in Potrero Grande. Since its opening, the Technocenter has provided dance, art, English classes, technology and computer training, communications workshops and incoming generation opportunities for over 2,500 children, youth and adults in Potrero Grande.

Current Grant:

EMpower’s 1st grant to Fundación Alvaralice would support 25 young people in Cali, Colombia, to improve their employability through employability and technical training, ICT training and psychosocial support to improve their self confidence.

You can support our work with Fundacion Alvaralice and our other grantee partners.

Our Underwriters pay for all of our administrative and fundraising costs, so 100% of your donation goes directly to empowering at-risk youth.