In mid-May, UNODC organized its first Youth Dialogue event in Brasilia as part of the Office's ongoing work in using sports as a tool to counter youth crime through the development of vital life skills. Bringing together over 20 adolescents aged 11 to 17 from Olympic Centers that serve under-privileged communities, the group discussed how sports influence their lives and how UNODC can ultimately use this as a vehicle to build resilience of at-risk youth and prevent them from engaging in violence, crime and drug use.
Experts on crime and drug-use prevention, sports and development, as well as evaluation and monitoring, gathered in Vienna in May to review the results of UNODC's sports-based life skills training curriculum currently being developed under the Doha Declaration Global Programme. With the gathering of key people from within this area, the meeting allowed for an in-depth exchange of views on the development of the impact evaluation tools and to discuss opportunities for linking the life skills training to other support services for youth in marginalized communities.
Under the Doha Declaration Global Programme, UNODC promotes sport as a critical tool to prevent youth crime. Through a life skills training programme, the initiative - Line Up Live Up - works with at-risk youth to build resilience to violence, crime and drug use. At this year's Crime Commission, UNODC demonstrated some of the life skills exercises on a specially constructed pitch in the UN Plaza - a location not generally known as the setting for a football match! Working with partners including the FIFA Grassroots Programme, the NGO Grassroot Soccer South Africa, and the First Vienna Football Club youth team, attendees were shown the exact exercises employed to help youth aged 13-17 gain the necessary skills and mind-set to be able to resist anti-social behaviours.
On the side-lines of this week's Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) a series of events were held to highlight the Doha Declaration Global Programme and provide attendees with a look at the areas undertaken by UNODC since the initiation of this ambitious work last year. On the first day of the Commission, a side event on the implementation of the Global Programme was held, illustrating progress made in the four areas of sports against youth crime; prisoner rehabilitation; judicial integrity; and the Education for Justice (E4J) initiative. This followed the opening of a youth football exhibition earlier in the day in the UN plaza showcasing UNODC's life skills training which is presently being piloted in Brazil ahead of a global rollout.
This month marked a period of promising engagement with Judicial Associations from over ten African countries and mutual agreement around the priority needs of Mozambique to strengthen its judicial integrity framework.
As part of ongoing work under the Doha Declaration Global Programme, UNODC attended the annual meeting of the Africa group of the International Association of Judges (IAJ) in Maputo where the theme of judicial independence was discussed, as well met key Mozambican judicial figures to discuss strengthening the country's integrity framework.