The Golden Colombia Foundation is a Norwegian aid organization founded in 2006 that works with social and economic development in Colombia.

We work primarily with culture-related projects, knowledge-based activities for disadvantaged youth, and with informing the international community about the situation in Colombia. See more about these program areas below.

The La Provincia Cultural Center, founded by Golden Colombia in Cartagena, offers courses and activities to strengthen Colombian national culture and to give international tourists a better understanding of this diverse and fascinating country.

Golden Colombia informs in the media and on Narkotikapolitikk.no about the situation in Colombia and about the social problems that the drug traffic causes in both producer, transit and consumer countries.

Albalab is the name of our centers for technology-based leisure activities that give youth in marginalized communities joy of learning and a sense of achievement.



Among our activities in recent years:

We organize learning-based activities for youth in Colombia focused on English practice, cooking and technology. We need volunteers who can spend at least four weeks with the children. Read more here, and contact us if you are interested!

On 5-8. July 2019, the Cultural Center in Cartagena hosted the first classical vallenato festival in the city. The festival marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great vallenato musician Alejo Durán and several of el gran Alejo‘s descendants performed at the festival.

Chairman of the Board Øystein Schjetne of the Golden Colombia Foundation spoke to the UN in Vienna on October 17, 2017. The occasion was the follow-up to the world’s drug strategy – post-UNGASS – and the theme was microtrafficking and gang activity and the solutions that may lie in so-called “alternative development in urban context”.

Read the speech here.

On April 17, 2019, Colombia’s Vice President Martha Lucía Ramírez visited Golden Colombia’s Cultural Center in Cartagena – to learn how to use Colombian national culture to create unforgettable experiences for tourists while creating jobs and contributing to economic development.

Golden Colombia published an essay in Dagbladet in 2017 at the 50th anniversary of the release of Hundred Years of Loneliness with the  Colombian conflict as the interpretation framework. At the 40th anniversary, we published an essay in the same newspaper that uses the novel to shed light on sustainability and environmental issues of our time.

Chairman of the Board Øystein Schjetne spoke at the UN in Vienna on October 24, 2018 about Golden Colombia’s alternative development projects in Colombia. The theme was Leveraging technology to stimulate entrepreneurship in the Colombian countryside.

As part of our efforts to strengthen and develop Colombia’s national culture, with particular emphasis on the vallenato music, our cultural center recorded two Bob Dylan covers with vallenato orchestra as a tribute to the great artist’s 80th birthday on May 24, 2021, starring Colombia’s reigning vallenato king, Manuel Vega, on the accordion.

See links to the songs and further information about the project at www.laprovincia.org/en/dylan80

Over four weeks in the fall of 2019, Golden Colombia was visited by 80 volunteers from the Norwegian Ernst & Young company EY Skye. The IT consultants contributed to the construction and financing of two youth activity centers in addition to arranging activities for young people in technology and cooking.

Golden Colombia offers nature experiences and voluntary social work as activities for rehabilitation of addicts. Here are participants from the Veien Ut Foundation with us to install a solar cell facility for the school and nursing home in a small community of Kogui Indigenous people in Sierra Nevada in 2018.

Drug traffic causes violence and suffering in both producer and consumer countries. In March 2020, we handed over to the Norwegian Storting’s health politicians 3200 signatures from concerned parents demanding immediate upgrading of preventive drug information activities to halt the increasing acceptance of drug use among Norwegian youth. In the picture, the Labor Party’s Tellef Mørland receives the signatures.

Golden Colombia wrote in Dagbladet on January 21 about the incredible suffering cocaine traffic inflicted on the civilian population of Colombia, and on the tragedy of child recruitment in particular.

Golden Colombia explains in these chronicles on NRK Ytring how microtrafficking and the gang phenomenon work – which has led Latin America to have the highest murder rates in the world. A problem ever more European big cities are now facing.

Another world
From Rio to Rinkeby
In the realm of violence


In 2006, Golden Colombia funded an initiative at one of the schools run by the Shakira Foundation, Pies Descalzos, where older children who had had occasional schooling due to the war could have their primary school approved in one year. Pictured is Øystein Schjetne, chairman of the board, with President of Pies Dezcalzos, Colombia’s former Foreign Minister María Emma Mejía.

See our article in Dagbladet the following year about this initiative and Pies Descalzos’ other work.


In 2011, Golden Colombia organized a style competition for high school students in Norway about the importance of saving the Amazon. The background was our drug prevention work and the fact that cocaine production is one of the major drivers of deforestation in South America. The jury included author Kjartan Fløgstad and publishing director Richard Aarø, and the three winners won a trip to the Amazon with Golden Colombia.

The Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, NRK, joined us for parts of the trip, publishing reports such as this.


In 2016, the peace agreement in Colombia was signed, and Golden Colombia was frequently used as a source and interviewed by the Norwegian media this dramatic year in Colombia. We also published several articles about the process that can be seen here.

Pictured is chairman Øystein Schjetne with president and Nobel peace prize laureate, Juan Manuel Santos.