A unique programme in Mexico City helps young people who are both out of work and education gain valuable life skills and self-esteem as they refurbish and maintain public spaces within their communities.
Jovenes Constructores is a Mexican non-profit organisation that recognises that young people can play an active role in providing services to society.
The association has spotted a unique opportunity for 16-29 year olds that has a dual objective for good: to refurbish run-down spaces in and around Mexico City and enable young people to work side by side, learning different construction skills whilst being encouraged to complete any gaps in their education. In addition to gaining practical training, the young adults also receive coaching in life skills and job placement.
The overarching aim of the programme is to promote personal development, leadership, employment, education and camaraderie among participants whilst connecting them with the public, private, and civil sectors of society as they are encouraged to give care and attention to municipal projects.
Disenfranchisement among youth often stems from a sense of non-belonging, which is when many are tempted turn to gangs or violence, seeking self-worth and a sense of place. Through Jovenes Constructores’ enlightened project, the young adolescents begin to interact with their surroundings in a new way, as they take on greater responsibility, connect with their community and rethink their contribution to it. This also changes the sometimes negative perception that the community has of these young people.
This inspired initiative is supported by Trafigura’s Mexico office.