Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice: actions

"Security with Citizenship: preventing violence and strengthening citizenship, focusing on children, adolescents and youth in vulnerable communities in Brazil"

UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) and other five UN agencies in Brazil - UNDP ( United Nations Development Programme), UNICEF ( United Nations Children's Fund), UNESCO ( United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), ILO ( International Labour Organization) and UN-Habitat ( United Nations Human Settlements Programme) joined the Ministry of Justice and other bodies of the Brazilian Federal Government in the programme "Security with Citizenship" to develop efforts towards reduction of violence that affects children, youth and adolescents.

The partnership, financed from the Fund for the Achievement of the Millennium Development Goals ( MDGF), recognizes crime prevention as a principal element for meeting of these Goals. The initiative assumes that poverty reduction and sustainable development in developing countries shall be build upon the fundamental values, among which freedom from fear and violence.

Activities of violence prevention among youth foreseen in the Joint Program include implementation of the International Youth Award ( Mérito Juvenil) - an international program in 132 countries, launched in 1956, which has already enjoyed participation of 7 million youngsters from all over the world.

The International Youth Award, funded by the UNODC, started to be implemented within the framework of the United Nations Joint Program on 16-17 November 2011. To mark the beginning of activities, representatives of the UNODC and the International Youth Award visited municipalities of Contagem, Lauro de Freitas and Vitória and formalized the partnership with the nongovernmental organizations that will implement the Award together with youth. Moreover, the visit marked the beginning of the selection process of local leaders, undertaken by the communities themselves. It is expected that over 2000 youngsters are going to be involved in the three cities.

The International Youth Award will be implemented by the AVSI Foundation in Contagem, by the Association of Educational and Cultural Development of Bahia ( ADESC) in Lauro de Freitas, Bahia, and by the Brazilian Center of Development ( CEBRADES) in Vitória, Espírito Santo.

Partner to UNODC since 2009, the International Youth Award is a self-developed program that seeks to reduce the violence that affects youngsters in age of 14 to 25 years, through the voluntary compliance of rules, self-regulation of behavior and promotion of social control mechanisms.

The main innovation of the Award's method is that there is no universal rule for participation. The challenge is defined by each of the participants, who set their own goals and monitor their progress. In each situation, participants compete with themselves and challenge their own limits.Throughout the programme, youngsters have the opportunity to participate in various activities within the four main axes of the Youth Award:

  1. voluntary service
  2. adventurous journey
  3. personal development and
  4. sport and physical activity


Related Information


Blog of Youth Award in Portuguese

Document of the Joint Programme Security with Citizenship