Back to top

Gloria Matilde Rincón Meza

HRD, Social Leader

Social leader and human rights defender in the region of Barrancabermeja, Santander and Magdalena Medio. Her vocation has been to protect, promote and guarantee the human rights of families who are victims of the armed conflict and of the population from the different differential approaches (disability, victims, elderly, children and youth, women, migrants, LGBTIQ+ community, etc.), human rights defenders and social leaders faced with the violence that the country and the region of Magdalena Medio and the District of Barrancabermeja experience on a daily basis.

She currently leads the Corporación Integrada para la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos, Sociales, Políticos, Culturales, Ambientales y Empresariales de Colombia - CORPOINDH. Her work involves being aware of public policies and laws related to human rights, developing actions of: reporting, policy supervision, complaints and denunciations management, advocacy and awareness raising, collaboration, monitoring, crisis and emergency response, ethical leadership, relations with national, departmental and district entities and authorities, and relations with international human rights organisations.

Since she began as a Human Rights Defender for CORPOINDH, she has provided psychosocial support, advice, accompaniment in reparation processes and access to justice, seeking to promote citizen participation and peace building in communities in the defence of human rights. She has been the victim of threats from illegal groups and has been the victim of persecution, finger-pointing and monitoring by the Colombian state.

HRDs in Colombia work in a violent and unsafe environment. They are subjected to threats, intimidation, arbitrary detention, enforced disappearances, physical assaults, torture, killings, illegal searches of their homes and offices and stigmatisation as a result of their activities in defence of human rights. The perpetrators of these abuses are frequently paramilitary groups, many of whom have links to the government or security services, or armed opposition groups. The continued frequent and severe threats and attacks against HRDs around the country contradict government claims of paramilitary demobilisation.


HRDs at risk in Colombia come from a broad range of different backgrounds, including: trade unionists, indigenous leaders, afro-colombian leaders, activists working with internally displaced persons and on land issues, women's rights defenders, journalists, lawyers, students and youth activists, church workers, LGBTI and HIV activists.