RED - Community Development and Licit Opportunities (CDLO)

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Community Development and Licit Opportunities (CDLO) supports peacebuilding in conflict-affected communities through economic development. It does this by promoting citizen participation in the design, delivery, and monitoring of rural development policies and activities. CDLO works in 51 municipalities in nine departments (Antioquia, Caquetá, Cauca, Cordoba, Guaviare, Meta, Nariño, Norte de Santander and Putumayo), and runs from August 2017-August 2023. 

CDLO was created in response to the negative impact that Colombia’s 52-year armed conflict had on rural communities. Conflict weakened the social fabric in these communities, and discouraged citizens from participating in community organizations, municipal affairs, and democratic processes.  As the Government of Colombia (GOC) begins to develop historically neglected rural areas, rebuilding social networks and trust will be essential to creating long lasting peace. CDLO is fostering citizen participation in local affairs and promoting licit and sustainable economies that will allow rural Colombians to live in dignity and peace.


Strengthening community organizations 

CDLO strengthens social capital by encouraging coordination between communities and public institutions during local planning and development efforts. Citizen engagement in these efforts fosters trust between communities, government institutions and the private sector, and helps build a shared vision for territorial development. 

IMPROVING public services 

CDLO helps public institutions provide public services like health and education.  Investments in public services strengthen social capital and enable local institutions to better serve their communities. 

Accelerating socio-economic development 

CDLO develops sustainable economic partnerships between communities, public institutions and private sector actors. These partnerships help upgrade physical infrastructure, improve regional connectivity, and enhance access to public and private services needed for entrepreneurship, investment and economic growth. 

Creating dialogue mechanisms

CDLO encourages dialogue between communities, government institutions and the private sector. Open dialogue between actors increases trust between citizens, firms and GOC entities, and guarantees that key stakeholders are included in rural development efforts. 


  • Leveraged USD $64.4 million in private-public funds;
  • Implemented 170 small-scale infrastructure projects to support economic growth;
  • Reduced regional travel times by 38% through small-scale infrastructure projects;
  • Improved the lives of 9,257 rural households through economic development interventions; 
  • Engaged 550 community organizations to promote rural development and strengthen alternative development; and 
  • Invested USD $8.5 million, and leveraged USD $24 million from the private sector, to promote economic development through tourism, non-timber forest products, gastronomy, handicrafts, music and culture.   
Contact Information
Valeria Narino


Last updated: August 25, 2021

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