Armando Paz (literally translated means "Building Peace") is an initiative with the overall goal of creating awareness and mobilizing central American youth, so they become change agents within their own countries, with the support of diverse social actors in their communities and societies.
This project is executed jointly by three areas of the Organization of American States (OAS): the Secretariat for Multidimensional Security, the Office of Education and Culture, and the Trust for the Americas in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua y Panamá. It is funded by USAID as part of the CARSI Initiative (Central American Regional Security Initiative).
The intervention has two main objectives: 1) to develop and implement a comprehensive advocacy and awareness campaign by youth for youth, focused on crime prevention, drug abuse, and gang violence in the region; and 2) to strengthen networks of young leaders in their communities as well as in organisations currently working with youth at a community, national, and regional level, in order to improve coordination, collaboration in strategic planning, and exchange of best practices.
Armando Paz has been constructed on two founding pillars: 1) young people are the most important asset in building peaceful societies and promoting their economic, social, and cultural development; and 2) peace is built through the participation of multiple sectors (government, youth, civil society, and private sector), requiring different types of investments in public policies beyond security issues and specifically involving human development.