Helping young people break free from violence and gang pressure
with Scripture Union El Salvador
El Salvador has one of the highest murder and crime rates in the world. It also has more than 60,000 gang members across most of its towns and cities. Following civil war, the country has been blighted by the emergence of dangerous gangs and organised crime affecting children, young people and families.
The Project aims to help girls, boys, adolescents, and their families in the Nicaragua community of San Salvador, to be empowered with practical tools to face the challenges of a violent society. Working in partnership with local churches, schools, and community leaders, the Project will target vulnerable groups engaged in violent acts or those at risk of becoming victims of violence.
The program, which will begin with training volunteers and leaders to run workshops, will launch creative ‘values for life’ educational sessions in the community. The aim will be to generate a space for individual and group creative expression, with opportunities for children and young people to create murals, music and drama, and join in practical workshops and activities. The sessions will help young people to develop values based on the word of God. At the end of the program a community thanksgiving event, or ‘Families Fair’, will be organised to celebrate and showcase all that has been achieved and to raise awareness of the project and how young lives are being transformed by new hope and faith in God.
It is hoped these projects will become a model for further programs in other communities across the country. The long-term benefits will promote the rights of children and young people, help raise community awareness, generate income opportunities, and promote a sustainable framework to support the needs of the community.