Day 01 -- BE_10_UP Hope in Fields of War Article

Day 01 -- BE_10_UP Hope in Fields of War Article - Seeds of...

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Seeds of hope in fields of war Colombia's poor find a way to survive amid the chaos By Steve Nettleton CNN.com Correspondent BARRANCABERMEJA, Colombia (CNN) -- Rosalba Gomez would never have believed that a visit to the market with only 500 pesos (25 cents) could spare her son from a life with the guerrillas. Years later, with her son enrolled in a university, while all his former friends have enlisted with rebels or criminal gangs, she feels she never made a smarter investment. "I sent my son to Bucaramanga (a city 100 kilometers [60 miles] away) when he was 13 and now I thank God," Gomez said. Thanks to a scholarship fund, she has been able to put two of her children through college. She said she hopes to send her third to university when he finishes high school. The auspicious shopping trip that changed her life came in 1993. It was a modest attempt by nine women to find food for their families in one of Colombia's most-violent cities. Unemployed and desperately poor, Gomez and the others had few options. They lived in a run-down "commune" northeast of Colombia's oil center, Barrancabermeja, in an area controlled by the country's second-largest guerrilla organization, the National Liberation Army, or ELN. Forced to follow the whims of gun-toting guerrilla militiamen who did not
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Day 01 -- BE_10_UP Hope in Fields of War Article - Seeds of...

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