Arnaldo Diaz

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Arnaldo Diaz

Founder, Ayudando a Honduras; La Red de Jóvenes de Jutiapa Honduras
Arnaldo Diaz Hero Image

Impact area: Civic engagement; Sustainable Development Goal 16

Arnaldo Diaz founded Ayudando a Honduras and La Red de Jóvenes de Jutiapa in 2016 and 2011, respectively. Both organizations are dedicated to promoting human rights and building peace in marginalized neighborhoods and communities, emphasizing collaboration, personal development, and youth leadership specially in rural communities.

"In Honduras, the problem of forced migration is closely associated with crime and other problems of social coexistence," Arnaldo explains, "and have been aggravated by the effects of COVID-19 and the ravages left by the ETA / IOTA hurricanes at the end of 2020. These problems mainly affect marginalized young people, some left behind my migrating parents, living in rural communities without opportunities to enjoy fundamental human rights such as education, decent employment, and peace. We started the PAZartistas project in 2020 to provide these adolescents and young people the opportunity to express themselves, learn and reflect through artistic expressions, and promote conflict resolution and the construction of peace in their communities. This funding will help us take the PAZartistas project to another level of impact in different communities in Honduras."

With a grant from the Global Youth Resiliency Fund, Arnaldo and his team got the support they needed to kick-start the project. Their work began with carrying out a diagnostic study of the situation of rural and urban youth in the municipality of Jutiapa, located on the country’s north coast. The study explored rates of youth participation, reproductive health access, youth employability, internet accessibility, and security issues.

Twelve adolescents representing ten communities were then trained in PAZartistas’ methodology and received smart tablets to help facilitate workshops. Each delivered five workshops on key themes, including identity, community, coexistence, coping with fear, teen pregnancy prevention, and methods of self-care. In the first phase of the project, more than 130 young people attended trainings. Says Arnaldo, “These skilled young people will serve as a critical pillar to transform their own rural communities into more peaceful and prosperous places.”

Three murals related to human rights and building stronger communities were also created through the project with support from the Mayor’s Office of Jutiapa, Red de Jóvenes de Jutiapa (youth network of Jutiapa) and SERSO Honduras.

“The GYRF award helped strengthen my leadership and creativity,” says Arnaldo. “[Through the project], I met other young people and their families, and together, we worked to strengthen the bonds between youth and their communities. It helped us to transform our reality in Jutiapa.”

The Global Youth Resilience fund will help Arnaldo and his team achieve these goals:

  • Equip 15 young community leaders with the PazArtistas methodology.
  • Empower 150 adolescents and young people in their own communities with the PAZartistas methodology.
  • Support 25 young people in the creation of thematic murals.
  • Support 15 young people to participate in the creation of 4 advertising videos on related topics.

Learn more about Helping Honduras here