Colombia Calling - The English Voice in Colombia

One of the most popular guests on the Colombia Calling podcast, Emma Louise Jay, returns to the airwaves from rural Antioquia to interview me in rural Bolívar. Think of this episode as a conversation of catharsis for us both as we weigh up living under the world's longest Covid-19 quarantine in the world in Colombia.

The truth is that we are both feeling the mental strains and pressure - as most are in Colombia - under this interminable lockdown and the worrying increase in cases and deaths from the virus in our adopted home country.

I use the term, "the veil is slipping," to describe what is happening in Colombia and hopefully, we go some way towards verbalizing our concerns at the moment.

Read Emma's blog:

Direct download: RCC_339.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EST

Based at the Instituto de Biología, University of Antioquia. Blanco Libreros studies mangroves and coasts from landscape ecology and ecosystem ecology perspectives and it is an honour to have him on the podcast to speak about one of the lesser known regions of Colombia, Uraba.

His trips to the area of Atrato River Delta are frequent. In 2009, he started mapping these mangroves using high-resolution aerial photographs as part of a multi-disciplinary biogeographic expedition along the Urabá Gulf. Afterwards, he collaborated with the environmental authority for zoning mangroves according to their conservation status.

These mangroves in Urabá Gulf, and particularly those settled on the Atrato River Delta, are unique, fragile and vital and they are disappearing at a fast rate in some areas, the coastal climate is warming as they are converted to pastures and urban settlements. Coastal erosion, deforestation, forest-agriculture transition, mangroves, sedimentation are all challenges facing the area.

Tune in to hear an expert in the region speak to us about his passion.

Direct download: RCC_338.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EST

August 7, 2020 marked the second anniversary of the inauguration of Iván Duque as President of Colombia and the midpoint of his administration so on this Episode 337 of the Colombia Calling, we welcome back the director of Colombia Risk Analysis, Sergio Guzman and Cameron Wilson, author of the new report: Defining his Legacy, Challenges and Opportunities for Duque in his Final Two Years.

Of course, since the report came out, there have been serious new developments regarding the house arrest of former president Alvaro Uribe for alleged witness tampering. President Duque has come out in vocal support of Uribe and we discuss the impacts of this and the decision made by the Supreme Court regarding the case.

Tune in for an in-depth look at Colombia's political landscape in 2020 and with an eye on the 2022 presidential elections.

Direct download: RCC_337.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EST

Born in Toronto, Canada, Brian Johnston decided to retire from corporate work at the age of 25 and to dedicate his life to the exploration of his passion...and this, over the course of many years on the road working for NGOs and volunteering, has brought him to Medellin, Colombia.

The Via Cocina – Food Train is a social transformation project in Medellin aimed at impacting communities by educating them in healthy food training and teaching them recipes from around the world. Johnston and his team train low income Colombians and Venezuelans how to convert local produce into distinct yet affordable dishes for their home and new businesses. The culinary techniques and recipes were researched personally by Johnston in more than 25 countries.

But, the work doesn't end here, Johnston also provides exercises in where to source the foods, how to manage a budget and finances so that the participants' money is able to go further.

Should you find yourself in Medellin, check out Johnston's project and perhaps contribute some money towards ensuring its sustainability. The website can be found - Also, go with a group and have the Via Cocina - Food Train students prepare you a meal.

Tags and Keywords: charity medellin, via cocina medellin, via cocina - food train, 

Direct download: RCC_336.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EST