Welcome to Alerta Joven, an initiative that promotes opportunities for Dominican At- Risk Youth. Alerta Joven gives youth a chance to discover their talents, to regain their lives and be productive people who contribute positively to our society.
Let's Start with the Basics
Adolescents and youth (ages 10-24) represent more than 30% of the population. Most of them are living in poverty, without access to education, health, and employment opportunities.
- 12.7% of adolescents between 10 and 24 years old with no identity documents cannot enter the education system or participate in many community programs
- The Dominican Republic presents the highest rate of pregnancy in adolescents in Latin America and the Caribbean, with 18% of pregnancies between 12 and 18 years of age.
- 36% of students do not complete their basic education.
- Youth between 16 and 24 years of age represent 38% of the total unemployed population.
What is a At- Risk Youth in Dominican society today?
- A teenager who left school during seventh grade (age 12) and now a 19 year old man with no hope or future.
- A girl who was born into prostitution and survives in the shadows of the informality in the tourism industry.
- A boy who committed a first offense with the law and is now socially rejected without possibilities to an education or an opportunity to work.
- A child is HIV positive and marginalized from their family and neighborhood environment.
- Children, teens, and young adults who are "stateless" people without opportunities to an education who seek solutions in the street.
- Youth without necessary documentation to enter the legal employment system.
- A 16 year old mother with two children, already alone, and abandoned by her partner.
- Teens and youth that have fallen into the trap of gangs and cannot escape.
- Disabled youth that have never had the opportunity to work because there are no employment opportunities
Alerta Joven is presenting a new face to At-Risk Youth by providing:
- A network of protection and security
- Sustainability: Alerta Joven will continue to grow after its initial financing from USAID ends after 5 years
- A multidisciplinary approach whose implementation contributes to reduce the levels of violence and crime.
- Integration of education, health, and employment services to provide sustained support for our vulnerable youth.
- A warm & protective place where a child or teen, perhads a first offender of the law, a school drop-out, or a teenage monther can knock on the door in trust.
- A place where they can rediscover hope, find proven solutions, exit the "pit," and continue their lives positively.