ExxonMobil Colombia is helping to foster respect and peaceful coexistence among the country’s youth by supporting the Golombiao strategy, a variation of soccer with rules that promote positive values and good behavior. The strategy is promoted by the Presidential Program ‘Colombia Joven’ and funded by ExxonMobil.
Known also as the “Game of Peace,” this national strategy started about a decade ago to promote the benefits of civil society and help young people living in impoverished or rural areas avoid joining militias and other groups seeking to sow unrest in the country.
“Golombiao has proven to be very popular with children in provinces across the country,” says Carolina Rojas, Public & Government Affairs Adviser in Colombia.
Most recently, ExxonMobil Colombia funded and helped implement a Golombiao event in Puerto Wilches in the northeastern part of the country. The town is located near the VMM-37 Block in the Middle Magdalena Basin, where the company is preparing to drill exploratory wells in an unconventional oil and gas play.
“We brought this initiative to several communities around the VMM-37 Block and had about 170 young people attend, both male and female,” Rojas says. “The program was so well received that we are planning to start a second phase of the project.”
The principles of Golombiao include:
- Taking care and caring for others
- Caring for the environment
- Freedom of expression
- No discrimination
- Active participation
The Golombiao website estimates that at least 60,000 young people know about, practice and promote the game across the country.