Definition of Youth

According to the Honduras National Youth Policy, youth is defined as 12-30 years of age.


Marriageable Age

  • Opposite Sex
  • Same Sex
  • Without parental consent
  • with parental consent
  • Male
  • 21
  • 18
  • --
  • Female
  • 21
  • 18
  • --

  • UNSD reports that marriageable age with parental consent for females is 18, however the US State Department (2012) states that females as young as 16 can marry. No specific legislation for same-sex marriage. Source: ILGA

Candidacy Age

Criminal Responsibility

Minimum Age
Source:  Code of Children and Adolescents of Honduras

Majority Age



Voting Age


Compulsory voting.
Source:  Inter-Parliamentary Union

Situation of Young People

Literacy Rates

Both sexes (15-24) %
  • 96.23% Male (15-24) %
  • 98.15% Female (15-24) %

Net Enrolment Rate

Secondary School
Both sexes %
  • --Male %
  • -- Female %
  • Year: No data.
  • Source: UNESCO

Situation of Young People

Prevalence of HIV

Male (15-24) %
Female (15-24) %

Tobacco Use

Consumed any smokeless or smoking tobacco product at least once 30 days prior to the survey.
Both sexes (13-15) %
  • 22.80% Male (13-15) %
  • 18.20% Female (13-15) %
  • Year: 2010
  • Source: WHO

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
Honduras has a national youth policy, adopted in 2007, that covers the period 2007-2021.

There are six strategic guidelines listed in the national youth policy:

  1. Empowering youth and citizen engagement
  2. Digital inclusion and multilingual communication
  3. Social inclusion through sport and recreation
  4. Economic rights through decent work and rural development
  5. Access to sexual and reproductive health services
  6. Access to justice and building a culture of peace
It is supported by the Comprehensive Youth Development Framework Act (No. 260-2005) (also known as the “Youth Law”) which identifies a “national youth system” composed of the National Youth Institute as responsible for the policy, the National Commission of Youth as the coordinating body between government and civil society, national youth sector councils as well as municipal-level offices for youth and youth councils.

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority
(ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth?
The National Youth Institute is the governing body of the youth policy. It reports to the President, and provides intersectoral coordination. Its responsibilities include monitoring and evaluating laws and policies that may limit the rights of young people, and promoting joint initiatives in social policy. The institute also plays a role in the National Youth Commission, which coordinates the link between government and civil society. It derives its role from the Comprehensive Youth Development Framework Act (No. 260-2005).

Youth and Representation

Does the country have a national youth organisation / association (council, platform, body)?
Honduras does not have a singular national youth council, but rather regional or municipal level councils, or councils representing specific youth sectors. As described in the Youth Law (No. 260-2005), representatives from the various youth groups participate in the National Youth Commission, the coordinating body between government and civil society, and also participated in the consultation for the formation of the national youth policy, as described in the policy itself.

Budget & Spending

What is the budget allocated to the governmental authority (ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth and/or youth programming?
HNL 17.3 million
USD 846,760
According to its 2013 budget, the National Youth Institute was allocated a budget of HNL 17,290,846.00 (USD 846,760). The last reported calculation of education expenditure for Honduras by the World Bank was in 1995. In this year, Honduras spent 3.58% of its GDP on education, but its equivalent in percentage of government expenditure was not calculated.
Total Expenditure on Education as a Percentage of Government Spending and GDP

  • % of GDP
  • % of gov. expenditure

Source: World Bank

Additional Background

From the National Youth Policy (2007) (original in Spanish):

The country ranks third among Latin American countries with higher educational inequality. In the urban areas there is an illiteracy rate of 9.5%, with 6.8 average years of schooling, while in the rural areas illiteracy reaches 26.5% [...]

The country has a small proportion of young people who frequently use the Internet (16.2%). 60% ​​of people who migrate are aged between 20 and 34 years. These young people are involved in internal and international migration. Their Preferred destinations are the United States – for 42.8% of males and 31.6% of women-, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua [...]

From the UNDP Human Development Report: Honduras 2008/2009 - From social exclusion to a youth citizenship:

 The youth of today has more education than previous generations. However, in 2008, still 7.2% of Honduran youth were illiterate. Secondary education at the diversified level, which should be the minimum threshold, is only possible for 25.7% of youth. 25.4% of young Hondurans do not work or study and face few possibilities of incorporating into flexible vocational training programs.

In spite of the annual average economic growth level (5.8%) experienced in the period 2003-2008, the Honduran economy has not been able to generate a sufficient number of decent employment for young Hondurans. The main labor problem of young Hondurans is not open unemployment but invisible underemployment regarded as the privileged space of employment instability.

The main cause of the international migration of young Hondurans who see the journey as an escape outlet is the precarious citizen condition characterised by, among others, unemployment and the lack of job opportunities. Being under irregular migratory conditions in a foreign land, young Hondurans cannot overcome the lack of citizenship given that their civil and political rights are constrained, even reaching the point of full denial of their rights via deportation.

…there is a comprehensive group of young Hondurans in addition to being excluded, are facing a set of risks that affect not only the quality of their lives but also threatens it seriously. The report reveals that among these risks are early pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, and violence. The social risk becomes a disabling factor for the practice of youth citizen participation.