Community Development

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Why It Matters


The foundations of peace lie in a strong civil society with the democratic participation of its citizens. In the face of increasing violence and insecurity, Cristosal strengthens communities by fostering a culture of transparency and promoting democratic participation at the grass-roots level.

What We Do

Building environments where peace is possible.

This program makes it possible for families forcibly displaced by violence to reclaim their life plan in safe communities. We also work to mitigate the deepest roots of forced displacement by building environments in which all people can exercise their human rights.

Our approach to community development addresses both a victim’s immediate need to be integrated into a safe community, and the long-term structural need for the creation of environments that honor human rights. The lasting solutions we seek start with the environments in which individuals are expected to develop and thrive.

Our Impact in 2018



forcibly displaced persons registered with Cristosal



people trained in human rights and building durable solutions



forcibly displaced individuals reintegrated into communities


United Nations Representative Visits Salvadoran Communities

UN Special Rapporteur Cecilia Jiménez-Damary at a Cristosal community workshop / Photo Cristosal

UN Special Rapporteur Cecilia Jiménez-Damary at a Cristosal community workshop / Photo Cristosal

United Nations Special Rapporteur for the human rights of displaced persons Cecilia Jiménez-Damary visited El Salvador in August. During her visit, she attended a community workshop hosted by Cristosal. 

“While community members told me that they felt that not enough is being done to tackle the violence, they also noted that they feared the police and armed forces when they come into their communities.” 

Jiménez-Damary called for the support of civil society organizations in the region, but added that “they are fulfilling functions which the State should be taking as part of its obligations under human rights law.”

Make a difference today

Without you, our work doesn't happen. Your donations support progress toward peace for one of the most violent regions of the world.