Private partnerships advance violence prevention activities in El Salvador
By Evelyn Rupert
July 20, 2017
Four companies and a nonprofit in El Salvador have joined the effort to make the country safer through a new partnership with a project to prevent violence and crime.
The new partners will invest more than $115,000 to support activities for at-risk youth in 23 municipalities through the El Salvador Crime and Violence Prevention Project, which is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development and implemented by Creative Associates International.
“The partnerships established here are very important, as these resources expand, complement and strengthen the benefits that the project offers vulnerable youth,” said Luz Mena Duke, Public-Private Partnerships Coordinator for the El Salvador Crime and Violence Prevention Project.
With this latest round of partnerships, the project now has 25 agreements with private-sector companies, which have helped sponsor Outreach Centers – education and recreation spaces for youth – and public projects such as installing street lamps in areas struggling with crime. The new partnerships were signed at a July 7 event in San Salvador.
The four new participating companies and nongovernmental organization are:
- Tire recycling company Re-tire
- Multinational retailer Unicomer Group
- Electricity company DELSUR
- Chocolate maker Melher Chocolates
- The Childhood First Foundation, an NGO focused on early childhood development
Investing in change
Their involvement will help the project undertake a variety of initiatives. At Outreach Centers, Unicomer will provide manuals and training for coordinators and volunteers. Melher Chocolates will donate equipment and materials to six Outreach Centers in Mejicanos to establish goal-setting workshops and youth clubs.
The Childhood First Foundation will offer training on interpersonal skills, reducing aggressive behavior, and fostering peaceful coexistence in communities in two Outreach Centers in the municipality of Apopa.
Re-tire will offer workshops on creating play equipment and decorative pieces with used tires.
And DELSUR will undertake technical studies to identify and fulfill the need for electricity infrastructure in three municipalities.
Mena said that the contributions from private businesses contribute to fostering good values, talent, creativity and leadership skills in youth, which can allow them to build more peaceful communities.
“We are grateful for the vote of confidence from the new participating companies that have sent a message to the youth of El Salvador that ‘We’re with you,’” Duke said.
El Salvador Crime and Violence Prevention Project aims to prevent and reduce violence in 55 key Salvadoran municipalities using more than 40 crime prevention tools – such as creating opportunities for youth, collecting crime data, and undertaking infrastructure projects to improve public space safety.
With reporting from Rene Urrutia.