Youth Crime Watch of Liberia (YCW) was established in 2004 to foster the interest of young people whilst ensuring a peaceful and crime free Liberia. Since its establishment, the organisation has proven exceptional within the youth community in the areas of crime prevention, youth empowerment and employment.
YCW partners with a number of national and international organisations (including Peace Child International (PCI), Volunteer for International Development and Aid (VIDA), and Mediators Beyond Borders) among others, in executing programmes relevant to youth-led development so as to give them the skills necessary to serve as agents of peace. The organisation is focusing on instilling positive values, fostering good citizenship, and building self-confidence in young people so as to give them the necessary resources for preventing violence, drug use and other crimes in their schools and neighbourhoods.
Consistent with its mandate as a youth peacebuilding and development organisation, YCW has for the past 8 years engaged in the provision of both formal and non-formal skills training programmes geared towards youth employment in Liberia. Specifically, YCW is providing Information and Communications Technology (ICT) skills training for young people in Montserrado County for more than 150 persons as a means of providing marketable skills that will engage them for employment, the Be The Change Academy which trains Young Women Business and Entrpreneurship Skills and access to a revolving loan. In Liberia, youth unemployment has been identified as a potential source of violent conflict. By creating employable skills for young people, YCW is contributing to peacebuilding efforts in a very meaningful way.
YCW is involved in the creation of the Mano River Union (MRU) Youth Communication Hub which is one of the UN Industrial Development Organisations (UNIDO’s) latest approaches to the Youth Employment and Empowerment Strategy. It is a tool that will allow young people to be heard and should provide them with the details they need to develop themselves. YCW has been a key partner of the UNDP in implementing programmes in Armed Violence Reduction and Social Cohesion, a project funded by the Government of Japan through UNDP Community Security and Social Cohesion program (CSSC).
Through its elementary programme, YCW gives children life-long basic safety and leadership skills, as well as literacy skills and acess to books through our new Street Library project. These skills are designed to build the capacity of young people for future roles as adults that exclude a violent approach to resolving conflicts. With support from the Japanese Government, we have constructed a Young Women Empowerment Centre in Wood Camp, Paynesville, which is currently benefiting over 1000 young women and over 500 high school students, graduates, and out of school young women. These activities provides life-long, marketable and sustainable skills. In order to provide a sense of responsibility and joint partnership, activities are been designed in such a way that young people can interact with adult role models and discuss issues affecting their well-being, including peace and national security.
Other links for information about YCW
Official Organizational Page: facebook.com/YouthCrimeWatchLiberia
Be The Change Academy: www.facebook.com/btcaliberia
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