Christian Aid is exiting from Bolivia as part of a change programme to deliver greater impact globally. We are focusing our work so that every programme reaches those most in need, addresses the root causes of poverty, speaks truth to power and raises the voices of people living in poverty.
Inspired by our new global strategy, Standing Together, we are deepening our interventions in fewer countries and living as good stewards within our means.
Watch the film below and celebrate how Christian Aid has helped communities fight for dignity, equality and justice in Bolivia.
From 1997 until 2020, we supported the most marginalised communities in the Amazon region to build their resilience to climate change, fight for their rights and combat gender injustice.
The Bolivian Amazon is an area with high levels of inequality and vulnerability. We supported indigenous and forest communities to claim their rights and adapt to the changing climate.
We worked with a range of partners from large, established institutions with national and international influence, to social movements and small community-based organisations in rural and urban areas.
Our partners advocated for a better use of natural resources, and for more sustainable models of development for Bolivia, and other areas of the Amazon and Latin America.
Our partner CIPCA worked to protect the territorial rights of indigenous people. We supported more than 200 families in the southern Amazon to manage over 1,893 hectares of forest sustainably, protecting them from threats such as land grabbing, illegal logging and cattle ranchers.
With financial support from the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), through its Programme Partnership Arrangement (PPA), we implemented an approach called PVCA (Participatory Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment).
This approach helped Christian Aid and our partners Soluciones Practicas and CIPCA to understand the needs, and listen to the proposals of some of the most hard-to-reach forest communities, who are often overlooked.
With funding from the Church of Scotland, and further support from the Irish Methodist Church, we worked with our partners to introduce renewable technology through the use of solar ovens in indigenous and farming communities in the Amazon.
The project helped to improve the wellbeing of families, and helped them to access food in times of crisis. It also reduced deforestation, with communities using 50% less firewood, and decreasing the daily burden on women who generally spend many hours gathering wood.
Our partner Fundación Solón led an annual campaign on water, which contributed to the UN approving a resolution stating that water is a human right.
Thanks to the work of our partner CIPCA, the income of 200 indigenous families rose by approximately 25% per year from 2016-2020, and the families had more food and greater resilience to disasters.
Our work influenced the government to develop national plans to help local communities manage risks. It has also leveraged an additional €2m in funding from organisations such as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and UNICEF to support more communities across the Amazon.
With funding from the Latin American Children's Trust, we also worked with CIPCA and Soluciones Prácticas to deliver a project aimed at helping young people set up businesses. The project raised the voices of young people in decision-making forums, and help build local support for young people in the Bolivian Amazon.
Working with our partner FUNDES, we brought together government, private sector and indigenous leaders to promote community-based eco-tourism, in order to uphold land rights and to protect the Madidi – the most biodiverse national park in the world.
Our partners Fundación Machaqa and UNITAS worked for gender justice. In March 2013, the Bolivian Government passed the ‘Comprehensive law to guarantee women a life free from violence’.
Find out more in our report: gender and politics in Bolivia
These seminars were my university. They taught me to be a leader.
- Blanca Pia Poma Coronel, Fundación Machaqa workshop attendee.