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Colombia Caravana Blog

31 Aug 18 

Day 1 (Friday, 31 August 2018): Departure and arrival

With the Caravana’s agenda for the next 8 days imprinted in our mind, this morning Wout and I felt ready to begin our journey. From Amsterdam to Frankfurt, from Frankfurt to Bogotá, the capital city of Colombia. Good weather conditions and a fair amount of sleep allowed us to use the 12 hours in the air for a good preparation of the upcoming meetings in Colombia.

It has been exciting to see how well organized the Caravana has been so far. The amount of work the people involved have already put into this project so far is impressive. That begin said, let me roughly explain what the next days will look like. The Caravana will officially start off tomorrow, with a gathering of the 20 participants. This allows us to meet the complete international delegation, with lawyers from Canada, Spain, Italy, Great Britain, Mexico and Switzerland and to get acquainted with the other two participants that will travel to a certain region together with Wout and me on 2 September.

During our visit of the region, we will meet with, among others, lawyers and human right defenders. Hereafter, all groups will travel back to Bogotá in order to attend another set of meetings. The Caravana will be closed on 8 September, after a thorough evaluation and discussion on the most important findings of the regional visits.

One last comment before we get started. Not unimportantly, throughout the next week, Wout and I will have to bear in mind that on 23 September the Dam tot Damrun in Amsterdam will be held. Before, after and during this running event, the most popular one in the Netherlands, Lawyers for Lawyers will try to collect as much funding as possible in order to allow Lawyers for Lawyers to keep participating in projects like the Caravana. As a non-profit organisation, Lawyers for Lawyers depends for an important part on donations, and the annual Dam tot Damrun is a great event to promote our activities. Not only does this mean that Wout and I will have to run 10 miles on 23 September. It also means that during the Caravana we will have to get up early and find some time to stay in shape during our stay. I personally can’t say I look forward to that, since the following days are expected to be intense and long. But hey, it’s for a great cause and at least it’s a way to get to know Bogotá a little bit and keep your mind young. If you don’t have time to walk the city, then run it!

Click here to read more about the Caravana mission. 

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