Park of Colors (PoC)

Park of Colors (PoC) promotes peaceful coexistence and integration of local communities in Manizales, Colombia, by mobilizing the talents of urban disadvantaged communities marginalized by violence. It improves the social networks of local districts through the execution of a local dream (the physical transformation of a meaningful space) led, co-created and co-executed with the community.

Park of Colors improves the confidence boundaries between members and a peaceful coexistence as national reconciliation support to a country in post-conflict state. PoC uses the OASIS methodology developed by ELOS institute in Brazil where the community mobilizes to build a collective dream using its own talents and resources. This implies the recognition of their potential, capacities, but also the improvement of the social networks to pursue a common objective. Likewise, it transforms the created self-perception of the community and strengthens their capacity to work as a team.

Park of Colors had its first edition in 2015 in the local borough of “SOLFERINO” in Manizales, which saw high levels of the young population affected by social issues such as gang violence, interpersonal violence and drug-trafficking. In the process, they learnt the values of cooperation, teamwork and tolerance.

In 2017, the second edition of Park of Colors was held in the community “EL SINAI”. This borough had been recently stigmatized as a violent neighborhood due to cases associated to interpersonal aggression and injuries and micro drug trafficking. We are currently working on delivering a third PoC intervention.

Our dream is to build a network of PoC in the city, so people can visit them, recognize their own city and abolish stigmas towards communities with such talents and dreams to build; therefore, transforming citizens’ coexistence.