Illegal recruitment of child combatants is one of the main scourges of Colombia’s internal armed conflict, affecting 18,000 children and adolescents, and violating national and international human rights laws. Yet only 2% of cases are brought to court. The effects of being a child combatant are intense and long lasting–many do not attend school or are below grade level when they try to reintegrate, and have emotional issues resulting from their exposure to indiscriminate attacks, disappearances, torture, death threats and massacres.
Founded in 1978, CRAN supports children and adolescents to grow up in loving family and social environments where they can exercise their rights and flourish. It has three main areas of work: re-establishing and guaranteeing rights, social inclusion, and prevention. CRAN strives for children and youth to have a family—biological or adopted—that loves and cares for them by providing temporary housing for children whose rights have been violated and for women experiencing unplanned pregnancies, and running a formal adoption program. CRAN works with child and youth ex-combatants who have been placed in foster homes, providing psychological support and other services to restore their basic rights and help them reintegrate into society. CRAN works with adults to raise awareness about their role in ensuring young people can exercise their rights. CRAN has close working relations with ICBF and recently implemented a project with the European Union to build synergies between the state and civil society to promote the rights of children and adolescents; it benefitted 33 regional ICBF offices, 120,000+ children and youth, and 350,000 vulnerable families. It is also one of two Colombian organizations that ICBF allows to facilitate international adoptions, which demonstrates that CRAN is a trusted partner of ICBF.
EMpower’s 1st grant to CRAN supports the development and pilot of a new model of care and more robust services for ex-combatant youth as they prepare to age out of state care and transition to independent living.
Primary Location: Bogota
Funded Since: 2016
Our Underwriters pay for all of our administrative and fundraising costs, so 100% of your donation goes directly to empowering at-risk youth.