Tiempo de Juego

Tiempo de Juego develops integral social skills and life skills in youth from the most vulnerable and violent communities of Colombia through sports and other recreational activities.
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CEI Plus Status

Program Results Status
Monitoring and Evaluation Reporting
Primary Approach: 
Fundación Tiempo de Juego
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Location Data

Soacha (Altos de Cazucá) and Cartagena (Santa Rita, Olaya Herrera, San Pedro y Libertad)
Geography type: 
Program Description: 

Tiempo de Juego was born from simple pick-up soccer games in Altos de Cazucá, a community on the outskirts of Bogotá populated primarily by desplazados, "the displaced." Displaced communities like Altos de Cazucá and Cartagena where Tiempo de Juego operates are among the most low-income, marginalized, and violent in Colombia. Government cost-cutting measures have reduced education budgets, and as a result children spend only half of the day in school, leaving them with unstructured free time and vulnerable to recruitment by gangs or teenage pregnancy. 

The aim of Tiempo de Juego is to fill up this free time with meaningful recreational activities grounded in the methodology of “Fútbol para la Paz” (Football for Peace), a psychosocial technique for building cooperation, critical thinking, confidence, and other skills necessary to counter negative societal influences. No one is turned away and the activities are free for everyone. What began as one Escuela de Fútbol in 2006 has now evolved into several after-school and weekend programs, including breakdancing, journalism, art, and basketball. For every activity the core structure consists of the same three parts:

  1. The topic of the week is introduced (for example, self-esteem). The team then agrees on the rules of the game to reflect the topic.
  2. Participants implement and monitor the activity based on the rules.
  3. Both teams evaluate how well the rules were followed and homework related to the topic is assigned. 

The model is unique in that the activities are almost completely student-run. To make the program sustainable and a true practice in community-building, Tiempo de Juego has created a pipeline to develop leaders through the program. 13-18 year olds can volunteer to become monitores, the monitors of the games, and then graduate to become actual employees of Tiempo de Juego as community managers.

 After first establishing their credibility within the community of Cazucá, Tiempo de Juego expanded from the field to the classroom by partnering with six local schools. Through Tiempo de Juego va al Colegio, teachers are trained over two days in Tiempo de Juego's methodolgy and given the tools to apply it in their classrooms. For instance, a teacher might select a monitor at the start of every class to monitor the behavior of his peers. This is accompanied by weekly follow-ups and classroom evaluations. The model is not about changing curriculum but engaging students in awareness and practice of positive behaviors while learning.