May 19, 2017
Latin America is one of the most violent regions in the world. The seven most violent countries – Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Venezuela – represent less than 6% of the world’s population, but 34% of the world’s homicides.
A campaign funded by Open Society Foundations is looking to reduce this number by half in the next ten years, an ambitious goal, but one that partner organizations believe is possible. Over twenty organization in these seven countries have come together through the campaign “Instinto de Vida”, or “Instinct for Life”. AJS is spearheading the campaign in Honduras, developing messages and communications materials to raise awareness and promote change in Honduras.
AJS-Honduras’ first video was launched on Mother’s Day, and addresses the 48,000 mothers who have lost their children as a result of violence in Honduras. From Rosa Reyes, whose daughter was brutally attacked in front of her home, to Julieta Castellanos, the director of the National University, whose son was shot by corrupt police, these mothers call on Honduras to end impunity.
For the second video, “Does Violence Affect You?” AJS’s communications team invited dozens of Hondurans to tell them whether or not they were affected by violence. “If we are all affected,” they ask, “Why are we indifferent?”
Though Honduras’ homicide rate has dropped by a third in the last five years, it remains one of the most violent countries in the world. Someone dies because of violence every two hours in the country – over 5,000 people per year.
Campaigns like this focus on engaging more Hondurans in advocacy to halt this epidemic of violence.
“It’s time to put a face on these figures,” said Carlos Hernández. “We cannot continue normalizing homicides in Honduras.”