Hold My Hand

Vulnerable Youths Become Agents for Change in Tunisia

  • Ngbita Pendje-Wallace
  • Dominique Thaly


As part of the programme to support penal reform, “Appui à la Réforme de la Justice (PARJ)”, a communication strategy for social and behavioural changes for the prevention of youth delinquency and the promotion of alternative measures to detention was implemented from September 2016 to March 2017 in the cities of Gabès and Manouba (Tunisia). The objective of this communication strategy was to enable parents, professionals, and children themselves to become agents of change and active participants in the fght against juvenile delinquency and in the promotion of alternative measures to detention. The strategy implemented followed a participatory process of communication for development (C4D) and carried out several steps: a baseline evaluation followed by partner’s mobilisations. In a second step, a youth mobilisation programme was implemented through a series of dialogues with children in conflict with the law, with children at risk, and with their families. The youths participated in participatory video, rap, grafftists, and social theatre in a transformative storytelling approach. The last step of the strategy was a face-to-face communication campaign using local youth and cultural centres but also involving local institutions where the media products created by the vulnerable youth were presented. The programme showed some very positive results such as improved self-esteem, improved resistance to delinquency, and improved dialogue capacity in the vulnerable children. Despite the short duration of the project, the programme worked with the different targets, and the engagement of the children was overwhelming. Educators in both towns expressed the importance of continuing the project.

How to Cite
Pendje-Wallace, N., & Thaly, D. (2018). Hold My Hand. The Journal of Development Communication, 29(1), 25-35. Retrieved from http://jdc.journals.unisel.edu.my/index.php/jdc/article/view/70