The beautiful city of Cartagena (Colombia) was the location selected by IFFD for the 2018 LAMFEL (Latin American Family Enrichment Leaders) Meeting on April 13 & 14.

Almost 200 leaders from 15 Latin American countries, along with Spain and Italy as invited guest countries, took part in different sessions on IFFD methodology and good practices for the organization and promotion of IFFD programs. Alejandro Reyes, president of FAMOF, welcomed the participants to Colombia, and the President of IFFD, Mario Armella, officially opened the meeting.

Enrique Pérez, Vice-President of IFFD for the Andean America area and Director of IMF Ecuador, kicked off the methodology work sessions with a talk on “The Case Study Method: What, Why and How?”. And guest speaker Dr. Cristian Conen – lawyer, research professor for the Institute of the Family at the University of La Sabana, and author of 8 books – gave a talk on “The Challenges of the Family in Latin America”. Javier Vidal Quadras, Secretary General of IFFD, closed the event by giving an overview of the work that IFFD is doing around the world, and a summary of the main projects and challenges.

The atmosphere at the event was one of overwhelming enthusiasm. For most of the participants, just getting there was a challenge, with people having to reorganize work and family schedules to be able to attend. It was particularly challenging for the Venezuelan participants who weren’t able to fly and had to travel by car, encountering several difficulties along the way, including the Maracaibo-Cartagena stretch. However, despite these challenges, all participants agreed that it was a hugely worthwhile experience, given that the meeting didn’t only provide training, but also an opportunity to exchange experiences and develop friendships.