Our Communities

Our success in developing and operating mines requires strong community relationships based on trust and mutual interest. Our community engagement strategy seeks to provide positive social and economic benefits and improve the quality of life for the people in these local communities.

Focus Areas

  • Formalizing our community engagement approach
  • Increasing the number of local suppliers and percentage of local spending
  • Establishing a formal dialogue process with local government, indigenous peoples and artisanal miners
  • Raising employee awareness and understanding of our human rights commitments
  • Enhancing the human rights aspects of the training with security personnel

For more details on our community relations, human rights and security related policies, programs and performance download our 2020 Sustainability Report.

Community Relations

We respect the cultures, customs, interests and rights of host communities, including Indigenous peoples, and our goal is to work alongside governments, host community representatives and other organizations to promote sustainable local development opportunities. This includes providing local employment and contracting opportunities and pursuing community development programs and projects that build stronger, more vibrant communities over the long term.

Our Environment and Corporate Social Responsibility Policy states our commitment to managing impacts on local communities and understanding their interests and concerns through regular communications with, and feedback from, community members.

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Social-Investment-Framework

Community Investment

Being a good neighbour and trusted community partner involves supporting the communities near our mine through well-designed investments that help address challenges, share the benefits of resource development, prevent or mitigate potential impacts caused by our activities, and improve living standards. In alignment with our Social Investment Framework, community investments are focused on the following areas determined by stakeholders to be of interest to their communities:

  • Health and wellness
  • Socio-cultural infrastructure
  • Education and culture
  • Institutional strengthening
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Caldas Community Centre

The proud community of Marmato has a population of 9,290 people. Angelitos de Luz identified the need for new community centre to promote community spirit and provide a central location for extracurricular education and training in areas such as English language, coding and robotics and textile design. Aris Gold has provided funding for the development and construction of a state-of-the-art facility.

Video: Caldas community centre

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Health Brigade

Prior to the onset of COVID-19, Angelitos de Luz implemented a Health Brigade program whereby medical specialists were brought into the community to provide care, such as visual health, to citizens in need. With local travel constraints in place due to COVID-19 restrictions, Aris Gold has prioritized community health & wellness by funding the distribution of medical supplies, face masks, cleaning kits and nutrition packages.

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Marmato Municipal Park

To encourage healthy and active lifestyles, Aris Gold is funding the construction of a major new municipal park in the community of Marmato. The modern 850 square metre park will become an important centerpiece of the community.

Video: Marmato municipal park

Community Engagement

Identifying those who may be impacted by, or interested in, our activities and business decisions and understanding their interests and concerns are critical to earning and maintaining our social license to operate. Prior to any development activities, we engage stakeholders to understand community concerns. Through our management systems, we continuously monitor and document community perceptions, expectations and interests. This helps us proactively identify risks and establish a collaborative relationship with community members via ongoing, face-to-face communication.

Local Procurement

At Aris Gold, we recognize that an important way for local communities to benefit from our mining activities is through procuring and purchasing goods and services from local suppliers. We have programs in place to identify local suppliers and build skills and strengthen capacity, so all local suppliers are able to meet our high standards for quality, competitiveness, commitment to ethical conduct and reliability. This includes complying with our Supplier Code of Conduct.

Indigenous Engagement

Our community relations approach includes respecting the cultures, customs and interests of all communities near our mine and recognizing the specific rights of Indigenous peoples. We have a long history of engaging with the Indigenous and Afro-descendant communities near our Marmato operation and working together to strengthen capacity and governance, preserve cultural identity, and build mutual respect and relationships based on trust. Our engagement approach includes embedding respect for the individual and collective rights of these Indigenous communities into our due diligence practices and in line with the principles of the International Labor Organization (ILO) Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention (No. 169).

Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining

Artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) is an important livelihood in many areas of Colombia. However, ASM can pose significant security, safety and environmental risks to ASM miners, communities and to Aris Gold and our workforce.

Aris Gold aims to manage these risks while recognizing ASM’s importance for the livelihoods of the people who live near our mine.

Human Rights and Security

Our activities throughout the mine lifecycle have the potential to impact the rights of workers and community members. Although governments have the primary duty to protect human rights, we recognize that respecting human rights is foundational to managing social risks and opportunities. We also believe we can be a catalyst for strengthening human rights by enhancing capacity and empowering communities.

We respect labour rights, including freedom of association and collective bargaining, and we prohibit all forms of forced, compulsory and child labour. As a member of the ZERO Child Labor initiative, we support the broader efforts to eliminate child labour across Colombia, particularly in the ASM sector.

Sustainable Development Goals