RED - Community Development and Licit Opportunities (CDLO)

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Community Development and Licit Opportunities (CDLO)


USAID/Colombia’s Community Development and Licit Opportunities (CDLO) activity will strengthen the capacity of rural, conflict-affected communities to effectively partner with the public and private sectors to implement social and economic development activities, especially those that promote illegal crop substitution and alternative development.  CDLO will complement GOC efforts by promoting the active participation of rural citizens in the design, delivery, and monitoring of rural development policies and activities intended to help their communities. Ultimately, CDLO will build trust, foster citizen participation in local affairs, and promote licit and sustainable economies that will allow rural Colombians to live in dignity and peace.

This support comes at a critical time as the Government of Colombia (GOC) focuses on broad-based regional development.  In order for the GOC to be successful, communities must come together, trust their local government, and participate in their own development. Unfortunately, citizens are less likely to participate in community organizations, municipal affairs, or in democratic processes after 52-years of armed conflict.  CDLO will play a key role in helping establish these conditions and rebuild the social fabric in rural Colombia.  

CDLO is implemented by Tetra Tech ARD and will run from August 2017 – August 2022 in 51 municipalities across the nine departments of Antioquia, Caquetá, Cauca, Cordoba, Guaviare, Meta, Nariño, Norte de Santander, and Putumayo.


Strengthening Community Organizations

CDLO will strengthen social capital by supporting activities that enable increased community-state collaboration through greater interaction and participation during local planning and development processes.  The activity enables improved collaboration between communities and institutions by promoting increased community participation in local planning and development efforts.  CDLO fosters trust between communities, government institutions, and the private sector to build a shared vision for regional development. The identification, design, planning, and execution of activities are guided by the principles of good citizenship, integrity, and transparency.

Improving Public Services

CDLO will address social and economic inequalities by helping conflict-affected regions improve the provision and quality of locally-provided public services, including local infrastructure.  CDLO prioritizes projects that strengthen social capital and enable local institutions to better serve their communities.

Accelerating Socio-economic Development

CDLO will develop sustainable economic partnerships between communities, and the public and private sectors.  These partnerships will result in upgraded physical infrastructure, improved connectivity, and enhanced public and private services that are necessary for increased entrepreneurship, private sector investment, and economic growth.

Creating Dialogue Mechanisms

CDLO will revitalize existing channels and open new spaces for dialogue between communities and public or private sector actors.  Open dialogue is encouraged as a means of increasing trust between citizens, firms, and GOC entities, with the ultimate goal of developing sustainable mechanisms of dialogue among key stakeholders in rural development efforts.


  • At least 300 small-scale infrastructure projects implemented to support economic growth.
  • 25 percent increase in sales for producer associations and businesses in the local and national markets.
  • At least $80 million leveraged in private-public funds to advance local development initiatives prioritized by communities.
  • At least 100 public-private alliances established with community organizations to build cooperation and trust.
  • At least 720 community organizations supported to monitor rural development, reduce coca production, and strengthen alternative development.
  • 25 percent increase in the number of citizens receiving public services from the municipalities.

Last updated: July 12, 2021

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