Using Sports to Prevent Crime and Drug Use Among Youth

Using Sports to Prevent Crime and Drug Use Among Youth
Using Sports to Prevent Crime and Drug Use Among Youth

This past week saw the start of phase two of UNODC’s work in Brazil around using sports as a means to prevent crime, violence and drug use among youth.

Following the start of the Office’s ‘Line Up Live Up’ curriculum in Brasilia, which will deliver life skills training in vulnerable communities, UNODC held a series of discussions with Government authorities, civil society and key sports organizations in Rio de Janeiro.

With Rio’s well-established community of NGOs working with sports as a tool for peace, UNODC met some of the city’s lead organizations in this area. They included Craque do Amanhã, Fight for Peace, Gol de Letra, Bola Pra Frente, Instituto Reacao and Projeto Grael.

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Several topics were covered, including opportunities to join forces promoting sports for youth development and crime prevention and ways in which UNODC can best complement the work being undertaken and build on local expertise.

Another key point raised at the meeting was how best to link life skills training to vocational and job skills in order to address multiple risk factors of youth crime.

Meetings were also held with the Secretariat of Sports and Leisure at both the state and municipal levels to discuss the identification of target groups and stakeholders to engage in Rio.

As the ‘Line Up Live Up’ training material will be available to assist coaches, trainers, social workers and other professionals working with youth in a variety of formal and informal sports settings, this is stated to be a crucial first step both for the initial training and the longer-term sustainability of the undertaking.

Photo courtesy: UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime)

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Rakesh Raman