The North Cauca Association of Indigenous Councils (ACIN) in Colombia‘s Cauca department has implemented its own re-immersion program for demobilized guerillas, helping them through the interview process required by the government and assisting them in finding homes and employment.
ACIN tells the story of “Washington,” a 21-year-old man who escaped from a column of the FARC guerillas four years ago with no money and no shoes. With aid from ACIN’s rehabilitation program, “Reconstruct the Road Back Home” (Recomponer el Camino de Vuelta a Casa), he now lives peacefully with his parents in the town of Nariño. He is part of a group of 48 demobilized guerilla fighters of indigenous origin that have been placed in the program, initiated in 2005.
The ACIN program works in conjunction with the government’s rehabilitation program demobilized guerilla and paramilitary fighters. Colombia’s government reported January 12 that 2,381 members of Colombian guerrilla groups deserted their ranks in 2010. (Colombia Reports, Jan. 17; El Tiempo, Bogotá, Jan. 16; Colombia Reports, Jan. 12)