Adolescent Participation in Latin America and the Caribbean

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In order to assist practitioners in Latin America and the Caribbean in the development of programs to engage adolescents through participation, Innovations in Civic Participation (ICP) and The Americas and Caribbean Regional Office of UNICEF (TACRO) have developed this handbook, which addresses the link between participation and citizenship and serves as a guide to some of the most promising practices in the field. Adolescent participation in the region involves a wide array of program types and approaches. Due to varying approaches to participation and the proliferation of many program models, it is difficult to clarify all that the term “participation” encompasses. Therefore, this handbook will focus on three approaches that have significant positive impacts on adolescents: 1. Volunteering 2. Service-learning 3. Advocacy and Policy Influencing We have placed additional emphasis on vulnerable groups including afro-descendent and indigenous adolescents, out-of-school adolescents, adolescents living in ghetto or dense urban areas, adolescents living on the street, and adolescents living with HIV. These groups require special attention to their unique needs and, as such, may require different program models. In each section on volunteerism, service-learning, and advocacy and policy influencing, we have included the most promising examples from our research, as selected by our team in consultation with adolescent participation experts from the region.

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