Skip to Collaborative on Global Children's Issues Full Site Menu Skip to main content
March 28, 2022

Responding To: Innovating Protection for Children at Risk in the Americas

Interrupting Violence in Honduras

UNICEF Honduras

UNICEF Honduras has been actively working to scale up protection of children for many decades, including children affected by migration, as a part of a comprehensive strategy that also includes social protection, alternative education programming, and others. To address the root causes of migration and re-migration, UNICEF Honduras works with the national and municipal governments, community leaders, youth-led organizations, and child protection authorities to strengthen their capacity to respond to violence and improve child protection services. With the rapid increase of children and families returned from the United States or Mexico, UNICEF Honduras also helps with the reintegration needs of returned children, and children displaced by violence, as an immediate humanitarian issue, supporting children and families through case management and access to education, legal assistance, and mental health and psychosocial support, while working to ensure that all children get the protection and services they need so that the re-migration will not be necessary.

The Cure Violence Program is one example of UNICEF’s innovative programming for children at risk. In 43 of the most violent communities in San Pedro Sula, Choloma, and La Ceiba, with the highest rates of crime and homicide, drug trafficking, and forced displacement, UNICEF works with community-based partners to develop and implement strategies to detect and interrupt violence, identifying and treating the highest risk individuals, and changing social norms.

In 2021, UNICEF and Cure Violence implemented the violence interruption model, which managed to resolve 3,987 community conflicts, related to abuse, sexual exploitation and harassment, death threats, kidnappings, exploitation of girls and women, forced displacement, drug trafficking, and domestic violence. Without the interventions these conflicts may have resulted in femicides, homicides, and other serious crimes.

This evidence-based approach promotes resilience by working with local actors to identify risk factors, mediate conflicts, engage adolescents and youth, support parents with positive parenting approaches, and carry-out case management with adolescents, especially those at risk of falling prey to criminality and/or recruitment into street gangs. This includes getting them connected to counseling, psychosocial support and protection services, education, and livelihoods programs.

UNICEF was created in 1946 by the United Nations to help children who suffered the severe consequences of World War II. In Honduras, UNICEF supports the creation and development of national programs and policies for children. UNICEF works with the state, civil society organizations, private enterprise, churches, and the media, among others, to promote national and international commitments that make the principles set forth in the Convention on the Rights of the Child a reality.

Other Responses

Juan Pacay
Wuqub' Tz'ikin

Juan Edwin Pacay Mendoza, Coordinator of the Kajib’ Ix Program, Vida Digna Collective Association; Maya Tz’utujil, Family-Community Organizer | March 28, 2022