Cuál es la verdad? (What is the Truth?)

Cuál es la verdad? (What is the Truth?) De-constructing collective memories and imagining alternative futures with young people in Chocó through music and arts is a Phase 2 Large Grant project in Colombia.

This project focuses on Quibdó, the capital of Chocó in the Colombian Pacific: a remote area disproportionately affected by armed conflict and home to mainly Afro-colombian and indigenous populations who face a complex legacy of intersectional inequalities. It emerges from a longstanding partnership between the University of Edinburgh and Universidad Claretiana and builds specifically on Partnership and Research Workshops carried out in May 2019 in Quibdó, funded by a GCRF Partnership Grant which brought together young people, researchers from Colombia and UK, artists, CSOs, local government agencies and education providers to collaboratively develop the project focus and methodology.

Our project responds to priorities identified by young people: tensions within and between neighbourhoods (barrios), violence and armed gangs, feelings of fear and distrust, through a co-produced music-and arts-based approach: with our CSO partners Fundación Casa Tres Patios and Mr Klaje Collective, we will support 15-20 young co-researchers from three Quibdó barrios to facilitate workshops with other young people to critically deconstruct collective memories. This will be achieved through a series of rotating workshops and performances that involve creating musical instruments from recycled materials, co-producing music about alternative futures, territorial mapping and sculpturing.

Our project aims to

1. Enable young people to become critical co-constructors of their communities’ histories and visualize alternative futures through a co-produced music- and arts-based methodology.

2. Generate dialogue between youth groups to break down neighbourhood barriers and deconstruct post-conflict tensions.

3. Make visible the experiences of marginalized young people and support the creation of sustainable alliances with CSOs, policy and educational stakeholders and researchers for delivering social justice for young people.

4. Investigate the potential of participatory music and arts as a tool for reconciliation and capacity building by engaging comparatively with projects in the CtS portfolio and beyond.

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