Stories that Will Leave Our MarkWe Reach Out Where the Communities Need Us

We Reach Out Where the Communities Need Us

Through our TGI subsidiary, during the pandemic we delivered 10,000 humanitarian aid kits to vulnerable communities in 41 Colombian municipalities.
  • Delivery of humanitarian aid packages in La Guajira.

    Delivery of humanitarian aid in different regions of Colombia

  • A woman shows the humanitarian aid package next to a TGI employee and a Civil Defense member.

    Delivery of humanitarian aid in different regions of Colombia

  • Two Civil Defense members unload humanitarian aid packages from a truck, and a GEB employee hands over a package to an older woman.

    Delivery of humanitarian aid in different regions of Colombia

  • Young Civil Defense members hand over humanitarian aid package to another young man.

    Delivery of humanitarian aid in different regions of Colombia

“I am from San Vicente de Chucurí, a land of valuable fruits. We are farmers, we live off the land, and thank God we had food during the pandemic, but in our municipality there are some very poor and vulnerable families. The situation the country and the whole world is experiencing caused jobs to disappear, and many did not even have enough for the basics, to buy food,” said with conviction Luis Alfredo Sánchez, Chairman of the Community Action Board (JAC, for the Spanish original) of the rural district of Mérida, in the municipality of San Vicente de Chucurí, in Santander.

The situation in Santa Sofía, Boyacá, is very similar. This is how Francisco Rojas, planning secretary of the municipality, narrates it: “The people make a living from tomatoes, but agriculture suffered a big crisis when the municipality was locked down… and were left without jobs. The situation worsened for many, especially for people with disabilities and for the victims of the conflict.”

As Luis and Francisco, leaders of the communities in the territories and the representatives of local governments where TGI is present knocked on the company’s doors during the pandemic, because in many cases families in the communities were facing great hardship due to lack of food.

In agreement with the municipalities and hand-in-hand with community leaders and the community action boards, TGI selected the neediest families that had not received any other type of assistance.

“The income of a lot of people was affected, because many were unable to work or make a living. For this reason, we felt solidarity and decided to assist and try to mitigate these desolating effects brought about by the pandemic,” explains Diana Uribe, social professional at TGI’s Social Management Department.

Each mayor took care of planning the logistics for the delivery of the aid packages, which were well equipped with groceries such as vegetable oil, rice, sugar, coffee, cocoa, beans, maize flour, powdered milk, lentils, tuna cans, panela, pasta, salt, and flour, “all packed in sealed boxes according to all the biosafety protocols, and when the community approached us to receive the food kits, their smiles and all sorts of expressions of thankfulness confirmed that this was the best way to be with them in these difficult times. Today, the smiles of those 10,000 families are part of TGI’s history”, Diana happily narrates.

“For this reason, all of us in Chucurí are thankful to the company TGI, because their act of solidarity was very big and surprising. I still run into families who received the aid and they continue to be very thankful for the food package they received from the company. That is why, I never get tired of saying: Thank you, TGI!” adds Luis Alfredo.

He, as a leader, is convinced that there is a lot they can do for their community when they work hand in hand with the companies, because thanks to these partnerships they now have rural gas networks and they have received training on different topics. He dreams of having basic sanitation, to continue caring for their water sources, of improving the roads, of having cell phone coverage, of learning how to set up a business venture, hand in hand with TGI.

The humanitarian aid reached many Colombian regions. Carlos Roberto Montes, chairman of the JAC of the municipality of Puente Nacional, in Santander, assisted in the process and prioritized the delivery of aid to seniors over the age of 70 who were unable to leave their homes during the pandemic to search for food.

Rosa Elena Rodríguez Barrios, Chairwoman of the JAC of the township of El Tropezón, in Norte de Santander, was responsible, jointly with La Esperanza's mayor, of verifying that the kits reached the families who were unemployed due to the pandemic, in order to mitigate the situation of vulnerability they were experiencing.

In La Guajira, community leaders were also key players in the process. Mariseli Bolívar, spokeswoman for the Guaimarito community in the municipality of Hatonuevo, assisted in the deliveries. “When my community has any need or difficulty, I am always there, but without TGI it would not have been possible to provide this aid. We are all very thankful, especially the indigenous communities,” she said.