“It feels like it’s the end of the world”: Cape Town’s young people talk about gangs and community violence

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HSRC, Human Sciences Research Council

It feels like it’s the end of the world”: Cape Town’s young people talk about gangs and community violence. Report to the Institute for Security Studies on the child participation study in support of the COAV Cities Project. Cape Town, South Africa: Human Sciences Research Council. This (69 page) report shares the views of children and young people in Cape Tow who are affected by gangs and community violence. It shares findings from research which is part of the COAV (Children in Organised Armed Violence) Cities Project is an international cooperation project that seeks to address the involvement of children in organized armed violence. More specifically, the project seeks to develop recommendations for policy and practice in relation to the problem of children’s involvement in gangs in the Cape Town Metropole. As part of the COAV Cities Project, the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) subcontracted the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) to undertake a Child Participation Study on children’s involvement in violence, particularly that relating to gangs and other kinds of organised armed violence in the Cape Town Metropole. This study was intended to augment work being undertaken for the COAV Cities Project by enabling the views of children to be included in the policy recommendations that will be developed. The report begins with a description of the methodology (and ethical considerations), followed by an analysis of the children’s responses (including their recommendations for prevention and intervention). These responses are then discussed within the context of key literature on child development and delinquency.

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