Former Colombian guerrillas who are being assisted in reintegrating to society as rafting guides are visiting The University of Queensland. The public events will feature ex-combatants of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), Colombian community members, and Special Assistant to the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Colombia, Mauricio Artiñano.The Colombians were invited by the International Rafting Federation to attend the 2019 World Rafting Championships in Tully, Cairns, as part of the Rafting for Peace initiative. The participants have trained to become certified rafting guides as part of their efforts to reintegrate into civilian life and to lead an eco-tourism project in Colombia.

Their visit is being co-funded by UQ’s R2P Centre which is co-funded by The University of Queensland and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, UQ’s Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, and the School of Political Science and International Studies.


Colombian Cafe - Seminar and roundtable

Wed 22 May 2019 10:30am12:30pm


The University of Queensland, St Lucia Campus
Innes Room ( Building #21C)

The University of Queensland's Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect invites you to a presentation by Mauricio Artiñano and members of the Rafting for Peace initiative. The presentation will be followed by a Colombian Cafe' roundtable discussion. This is an opportunity for participants to learn about reincorporation, reconciliation, and everyday peace building through an intercultural dialogue exchange facilitated by Rotary Peace Fellow Michelle Helman.

Mauricio Artiñano is currently the Special Assistant to the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Colombia.  He has served in Colombia with the United Nations for over three years. Prior to that, he served with the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia and the UN Mission in South Sudan.

Members of the Rafting for Peace initiative are:  Mr Edgar Portela Calderon, Ms Leidy Lorena Leiva Pastrana, Mr Jose David Gamboa, Mr Frellin Alberto Norena Ochoa, Mr Jhon Sebastian Rivas Narvaez, Mr Edison Gaviria Papamija, Mr Jimmy Berned Charry Perdomo, Mr Hermides Linares Montiel.


Please register to attend

Program and timings

10.15am: Registration

10.30-11.30am: Presentation

11.30-12.30pm: Colombian Cafe and roundtable