Haidy Duque Cuesta

Ashoka Fellow
Bogota, Colombia
Fellow Since 1999


This profile was prepared when Haidy Duque Cuesta was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1999.
The New Idea
A person who herself was displaced by Colombia's ongoing internal conflict, Haidy Duque has developed a process of psychosocial intervention that attends to rural Colombians who have been physically displaced by violence. She has developed a methodology for leading the displaced through a recounting and analysis of their experience, so that they can come to terms with the past and begin to reinvent themselves, beginning with the search for income generating activity. The process is group-oriented, accessible to even the poorest client, and can readily be adopted by lay people for implementation.

Haidy engages with local church and civil society organizations as replicators of her methodology to maximize impact across the population. She also uses those contacts to help link her clients with other sources of institutional support as they rebuild their lives. Her organization, Taller de Vida (Life Workshop), is working in Bogotá and four other regions of the country with a particular focus on displaced Afro-Colombian populations that face not only the trauma and loss of livelihood as a result of displacement but racial discrimination as well.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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