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Is there Hope for Central American Youth?

Six expert panelists weigh in on the difficult situation facing Central American youth and offer possible solutions for improving their opportunities for education and employment.

Date & Time

Sep. 18, 2014
9:00am – 12:00pm


6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center
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Is there Hope for Central American Youth?

Event documents are now available for download at the bottom of this page. Papers from several speakers will be posted soon.

Violence remains high in the countries of Central America’s Northern Triangle – Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. Maras threaten many communities and the gang truce in El Salvador appears to have unraveled.  The recent surge in migration of Central American children toward the United States has brought renewed focus on the problems facing youth in the region. In the context of sustained violence and limited opportunities, many are asking: Is there hope for young people in Central America? This event brings together two panels of experts working in the region to discuss the roots of violence and desperation in Central America, and to offer policy ideas for alternative approaches to addressing the challenges of youth trapped in violent environments.


Cynthia J. Arnson                   
Latin American Program, Wilson Center


Claudia Paz y Paz
Former Attorney General, Republic of Guatemala

César Rivera                           
Inter-American Development Bank, Honduras

Anthony Fontes                                  
University of California Berkeley

Miquel Cortes Bofill               
Federación Internacional Fe y Alegría, Guatemala

Katharine Andrade Eekhoff   
Catholic Relief Services, El Salvador

Rodrigo Serrano                      
The World Bank


Carlos Basombrío                   
Wilson Center Global Fellow

Eric L. Olson                          
Latin American Program, Wilson Center

Hosted By

Latin American Program

The Wilson Center’s prestigious Latin American Program provides non-partisan expertise to a broad community of decision makers in the United States and Latin America on critical policy issues facing the Hemisphere. The Program provides insightful and actionable research for policymakers, private sector leaders, journalists, and public intellectuals in the United States and Latin America. To bridge the gap between scholarship and policy action, it fosters new inquiry, sponsors high-level public and private meetings among multiple stakeholders, and explores policy options to improve outcomes for citizens throughout the Americas. Drawing on the Wilson Center’s strength as the nation’s key non-partisan forum, the Program serves as a trusted source of analysis and a vital point of contact between the worlds of scholarship and action.  Read more


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