Cartagena de Indias, declared a historical and cultural heritage of humanity, is one of the most touristic districts of Colombia. The city is located in the northern Caribbean coast of the country and its economy is concentrated in tourism and port industries. Cartagena has experienced an exponential growth in its population, the second largest in the country after Bogota. The disparity between the population and economic growth has caused an excessive increase in the city’s social needs.
The National Administrative Department of Statistics (DANE, acronym in Spanish), reported that in 2016 29,1% of the population in Cartagena live in poverty and 5,5% under extreme poor conditions. It means that in 2016 there were 290 thousand people in Cartagena living in poverty and 50 thousand in extreme poverty.
When the Foundation started operations in the city in 2001, it found the problems illustrated in the infographic above. The high rates of infant mortality and teenage pregnancy in Cartagena, both closely tied with extreme poverty, moved the Foundation to focus its plan of action to these two objectives and to this city in particular.