Victor Solis Camacho

Librarian for Peace during 2017 in the village of Gallo,
located in the municipality of Tierralta in the Department of Córdoba, Colombia.

    Victor tells us:

    "I am a peace librarian from the village of Gallo in Tierralta. Córdoba. I am 27 years and was old born in Cúcuta - Norte de Santander. I am a social communicator and technologist working mostly in governmental agencies. I began working in 2014 as a promoter of reading in the municipal network of reading and writing in Cúcuta. In the summer of 2014, I was named director of the Simón Bolívar Public Library in the northern capital of Santander, where I was responsible for launching the so-called "lunada literaria," which involved promoting reading and film among vulnerable communities in the countryside.

    In 2017 and 2018, as head of the Gallo Public Library, I became part of the group "Librarians for Peace" organized by the Ministry of Culture and the National Library of Colombia. Gallo was in the heart of the post-conflict. Here I was responsible for launching different initiatives to bring "library equipment" to territories that are difficult to access. The 'muloteca' and the 'literary canoe' are two of those initiatives. In addition, I was responsible for creating library and cultural content that has been well-recognized by local users and has attracted national attention, such as the film series "Gallo as you had never seen it before - The series." These activities helped the library to gain national recognition and take fifth place in the 2018 Daniel Samper Ortega National Library Prize in 2018.

    I am pleased to see that The New York Times in Spanish noticed my work in Gallo, and highlighted it among the most important in the world: I am currently working at the Corpoculect, a Cultural Reading and Writing Corporation in the municipality of Cúcuta, which operates in the metropolitan area and at the Venezuelan border. Corpoculect provides books, 'lunadas,' movies and libraries."

The Work of the Gallo Public Library

Arrival of the 58th front of the FARC-EP
to PTN Gallo

Where is Gallo?

The "vereda" (rural township or village) of Gallo is a rural area of the municipality of Tierralta, in the department of Córdoba. On June 23, 2016, Caracol Radio described what Gallo was like when it was designated as a territory to receive demobilized FARC ex-combatants. "To get to Gallo, one has to leave the urban area of Tierralta and travel an unpaved road for about 40 minutes; from there you arrive at the Port of Frasquillo, another township of the municipality, and travel by river through the Urrá reservoir for about an hour to reach the final route.

When the canoe reaches the shore, the first thing you can see are two huts with palm trees and a wooden fence, each plank separated from the other by more than 5 meters.

Upon entering the village, the panorama reveals a sparsely populated area. This is confirmed by its inhabitants, who say that the community is made up of 31 houses and 152 people, including 60 children.

All bussiness in Gallo must be done before noon, since at 11:00am the last canoe from Frasquillo leaves for Gallo. Food is bought weekly to save money on tickets; each person pays 32,000 pesos round-trip and the canoes can carry 15 passengers. If an inhabitant of Gallo for any reason stays in Frasquillo after last canoe departs, he must pay about 200,000 pesos to be expressly taken to his community.""


The job


With books, technology, games, crafts, digital literacy services and "cineforos,"" #BibliotecarioDeLaPaz Victor Solis Camacho arrived with his program "Muloteca Viajera" and began opening educational and cultural paths along the inhospitable trails of the Alto Sinú, in Tierralta, Córdoba.

The mules arrived in canoes and crossed mountains. They invited children and adults to participate in library-extension activities that arrived with the "Traveling Library," and which took place in the indigenous La Mina council.


The "literary canoe" and the "muloteca"

The influence of the Public Library for Peace was extended to the indigenous communities thanks the "literary canoe" and the "muloteca".

"Gallo, Let's make movies"

One of the activities that had the most impact within the community was the organization of technological training workshops (appropriation) requested by the users and organized by Victor. These included not only workshops on the use of the computer and the Internet, but also advanced film making workshops were offered. Thanks to these workshops, the community could work on describing their path by using video and documentary as a channel of collective expression throughout the region.
Here you can see the results of the series entitled "Gallo Hagamos cine"

The series: "Gallo, as you've never seen it"

To understand the genesis of this series, read this article "Gallo as you had never seen it, the documentary series that shows the other side of this region", published by Lina Otálvaro in En Red, number 12, May 2018. pages 26-30.

More photos of activities

A photogallery on Flick