After a very slow beginning spent surviving the initial knock of jet lag, acclimatising to the altitude and feeling small at the sight of the surrounding mountains. I am ready, at long last, to begin gathering stories of extraordinary impact here in Colombia. With thanks to Fundacion Dunna, I have the opportunity to connect with some exceptional leaders in radical restorative practice service design, the facilitators of their innovative programming, the partner organisations and beneficiaries of their work’s impact.

Dunna’s work spans many different contexts; from restorative justice process development that, through collaboration, forms a significant contribution to the peace process, to designing social engagement protocols and sharing them with displaced populations and the organisations that provide support for them in cities and remote locations nationwide. 

After familiarising myself with the leadership team and facilitators here in Bogotá, where Dunna is based, I will travel north to La Guajira to hear stories of change, legacy and belonging from those that have experienced the Dunna protocol, I’ll then travel south to Cali to do the same. These stories will compile both part of my report for the Churchill Fellowship and a guest column about resilience, understanding and restorative practice for the Traumatic Stress Research Consortium led by a group of therapists, clinicians and researchers based out of Indiana University and around the US.

I’m excited to finally be here, I feel ready to learn and to get comfortable outside of my comfort zone. 

Wish me luck!

Abi Nolan, 2023