A Colombian peace maker's story
Mayerly is from Socha and is a 16 year old girl. She has an older sister named Yemi who she lives with including her parents and grandparents. She lives in a poor community with gangs and broken down houses. Her friend was killed in a gang fight and blames Colombia for it. She thought living closer to Bogota would make their life easier after her old farm house on the south of Bogota got swallowed up by the earth. She was very close to Sister Martha and Pastor Javier who introduced her into her group called “Timoteo Club” which helped other children that needed it.
As I mentioned before, Mayerly lives in a poor community in Socha. There are many gangs and people get killed there daily, even close friends or parents. But in her case, it was a friend who was killed by a gang. Also, they had work but it was hard and paid poorly. Many people fell into poverty because of low pays. The schools are poorly maintained. Her house was a two room shack.
The movement was for peace. After all the gangs and children soldiers they wanted to change that. Everyone in the group has had someone that was killed or kidnapped, so they all strongly believe in the movement. Thousands wanted to vote. on October 25, 1996 she rode on a bus with 50 others to go to Plaza Bolivar in Bogota to vote in Children's Mandate.
What They Wanted For The Future
What they wanted for the future was less violence on the streets. They also hopped to eliminate many gangs and child soldiers. The government agreed not to let kids under 18 join the armed forces, but sadly other groups still accepted them. But they have gone far in the movement.