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Belize Targets “At Risk” Youth with Anti-Gang Program

The Youth For the Future under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Youth in collaboration with the United Nation’s Development Fund launches the “Southside Youth Success Project: Pathways to employment for young men at-risk of joining gangs”

The project is funded for two years and proposes to reach out to at-risk male youths by establishing a Youth for the Future ‘drop-in’ centre on Southside Belize City; provide youth with mentoring, moral guidance & social values, life-skills and ‘job preparation’ training; placing them in paid apprenticeship or job positions through our business partners; and provide on-going support-services for employed youths – further mentoring, training, and ‘trouble-shooting’ to keep them at work.

This idea became a reality as a result of collaborative efforts amongst our partners in youth development to establish this project, representatives include: the Community Rehabilitation Department (CRD), Community Policing Unit (CP), Conscious Youth Development Program (CYDP) The Mayor’s Office (BCC) RESTORE Belize, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) and UNDP Belize.

Through this effort a grant was secured from the United States Embassy Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) to address the issue of ‘at-risk’ young men who are the core recruits for gangs that perpetuate community crime and violence in Belize City and in particular on the south-side.

The launch of the project was held at the University of the West Indies Auditorium, on Wednesday, December 14, 2011.

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