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 2015
Community and municipal graduates from the Citizen Formation School - a diploma course that teaches participants to design and implement their own rights-based development projects.
Citizens engaged in community projects created, designed, and run by Formation School graduates. Projects use a rights-based approach to address the structural causes of poverty at a local level.
Residents impacted by community projects in Ciudad Arce and Cuscatancingo, where Cristosal provides rights-based training to all municipal employees.
International Recognition of the Importance of Strong Communities
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
Cristosal depends on your donation to continue improving conditions for thousands of families in Central America. Help us protect those who need it most.