Out of War
Juan Elias was born in Auguachica in the year 1981. Juan Elias's childhood was privileged. He lived in a huge rambling mansion where his father led a dental practice. Every weekend Juan Elias's family ventured to a farm 10 miles away. This was a meaningful place for his father because he was always a farmer by heart. When Juan Elias was a child Juan was diagnosed with Hepatitis. Juan's parents were always protective of Juan because he had Hepatitis. Juan and his older brother Andres always got along well. Juan and his brother Andres had a passion for survival games and they bonded by playing these games. In 1989 Luche, Juan's cousin moved into his house with his aunt and three other children. In the same year, 1989 Juan and his family had to move into a cramped apartment in Auguachica. This was a huge change for Juan living in a mansion to a cramped apartment. In 1990, all of Juan's family's cattle was stolen and men showed up at the farm demanding food, shelter, and money in return for their "protection" services. After numerous threats towards Juan and his family, his mother finally decided to move to the town Bucaramanga in 1994. There Juan transferred schools to the Jose Maria Campo Serrano. Juan looked at the school as a "island of peace" In 1995 Juan and his family moved back to Auguachica while the violence ceased. In 1995 Mayor Rincon appointed Juan child mayor. Juan talked to schools about creating a more peaceful and tolerant atmosphere and pushed for children's rights. In May 1996 Mayor Rincon asked Juan if he could represent Aguachica for a workshop being organized by UNICEF. At the workshop the children discussed child rights and formed the Children's movement for Peace, an organization which promoted child rights.