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Favoring technical training in “Boquerón” detention center in Guatemala

October 14, 2016
Est. Reading: 2 minutes
Boquerón Detention Center in Guatemala. Photo credit: Interpeace

The “Boquerón” detention center is located in the district of Santa Rosa in Guatemala, less than an hour away from the capital. In 2015, Interpeace’s Regional Office for Latin America, began to implement a project to provide technical training for young inmates in this detention center. The project was made possible with the cooperation of the Spanish NGO International Youth Initiative and the financial support of Malaga’s City Hall.

For Interpeace, the implementation of treatment programmes in detention centers, is intended to promote rehabilitation processes and support the General Direction of the Penitentiary System in Guatemala. This is accomplished by providing inmates with social, educational, cultural and productive job training workshops.

As part of the project, technical training was provided for young inmates at “Boquerón” in graphic design, serigraphy and dye-sublimination; workshops in computer programming and maintenance, as well as diverse methods of craft elaborations. In addition to these workshops, the young inmates were also trained to develop skills in management and conflict transformation, psychology and personal motivation. Moreover, Interpeace provided them with a screen printing apparatus, as well as several supplies and equipment for dye-sublimination, which uses heat to transfer dye onto materials such as plastic, cards, paper, or fabric.

Workshop at Boquerón Detention Center in Guatemala. Photo credit: Interpeace.

The systematic nature of society requires interventions oriented toward generating synergies which favor interactions between different tracks or different sectors of society, which is why Interpeace also applied its Track 6 approach in this project. Interpeace officials performed several activities at the political level (Track 1) with the Vice Minister of Security and the Directives of the Penitentiary System, conducted activities with other organizations of civil society working in support of the prison system (Track 2) and implemented activities directly with the young inmates, who are the beneficiaries of the project (Track 3).

The ultimate goal of the project was to expand the social function of the prison system and to achieve specific objectives such as reducing leisure time in detention centers and provide methods of rehabilitation and social reintegration with respect to the inmates’ human dignity, human rights and laws.

Shirt elaborated by the participants of the Boquerón project in Guatemala. Photo credit: Interpeace.