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Women from Siloé, a barrio of Cali (Colombia), defy drugs, violence and unemployment by creating companies

Violence, armed gangs, unemployment and drug abuse. Those are daily threats for almost 100,000 neighbours from Siloé, a barrio of the Colombian city of Cali. Some women defy reality becoming businesswomen of the “Siloé visible” programme. Siloé’s image, barrio of Cali (Colombia)/EFE

Dressmaker Rocío Quintero, one of those women, has found a micro-enterprise of bags, bracelets, handicrafts and cases fabrication, helped by institutions that participate on the programme.

That is the result of the job offered by Sidoc to a family, who had to elaborate paint and change barrio’s facades. Thus, they earned three million pesos (1,660 dollars) and it was invested on two industrial sewing machines.

Alaya Centre “trained me as a businesswoman, it is working well, I do my sums, I know how much I have to earn”, tells Quintero who is trying to show her products on Facebook “to sell more” and to fulfil the dream of “growing as businesswoman and creating employment”.

More than twenty initiatives


Alaya Development Business Centre, by the hand of Occident Iron and Steal Foundation (Sidoc) and Icesi University, has advised and trained 86 businesspeopleThat is just an example among twenty initiatives started on October 2012 when Alaya Business Development Centre arrives to this barrio of Cali. It came by the hand of Occident’s Iron and Steel Foundation (Sidoc) and the Icesi University.


The aim is “giving assistance to people who want to start his business and those interested on reinforce their own enterprises, explains Carolina López, coordinator of Icesi Business Programmes, to EFE.


Opening a branch office in Siloé wasn’t randomly because this land has all factors that fit with the necessity of creating economy, employment and hope.

Siloé community leader and New Light Foundation director, David Gómez, are seeing results: “people have been motivated to not fear business creation”.

Alaya Centre has advised and trained 86 businesspeople in a year and also he has managed 133 credits, from which 14 had been approved for a value of 7,7 millions pesos (4,277 dollars) and 17 more are being analyzed.

July 6, EFE/Practica Espanol


Grammar notes : present perfect simple and verb to be en español

Ejercicio 1

Comprensión de la noticia

Felicidades - has completado Comprensión de la noticia.

Tu calificación es %%SCORE%% de un total de %%TOTAL%%.

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Question 1
La noticia trata de…
La violencia en las calles de Siloé
Las mujeres
El auge empresarial en Siloé
Question 2
¿Cómo se llama el programa que está ayudando a la formación de nuevas empresas en Siloé?
“Siloé visible”
Centro Ayala
Question 3
Se escogió la zona de Siloé para emprender este proyecto…
Por elección popular
Por azar
Por tener los medios necesarios para su desarrollo
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