In 2008 ChildHope and Brazilian partner organisation Projeto Legal began a project in Rio de Janeiro working to support vulnerable adolescents and young people in contact with the law.
The project aims to tackle the wide range of discrimination faced by adolescents who have become embroiled with the Brazilian legal system.
Evidence suggests that many of these adolescents find themselves legally unrepresented, so in response the project provides full legal support and social assistance to children and their famililes to help protect their rights.
Juvenile justice in BrazilAlthough Brazil's constitution is internationally recognised for its protection of children and young people's rights, the reality is very different for many of the most vulnerable children.
Approximately 45% of youths aged 15-24 in Brazil are neither in education nor employment and many are caught in severely exploitative situations.
With few opportunities and living in communities where pressure from gangs is intense, many young people become involved in crime whilst others are targeted by the police even when innocent.
With poor access to legal representation and no understanding of their rights, many find themselves trapped in an overcrowded and under resourced juvenile justice system.