Over the last two months, the work of the young people who are members of the AWAY project advisory board focuses on the preparation of an information campaign aimed at popularizing among their peers the diversion as an effective approach to the implementation of child justice.
The young people had the task of getting to know the information materials produced by the project team and to share their insight to what extent the presented information is interesting and accessible to them. In this way, they have become acquainted with the concepts of restorative justice, juvenile justice and diversion, as well as with the specific rights children have violated the law. "It was a new and very useful thing for me to learn that according to child-related justice guidelines, I have the right to access lawyers' help, specialized one," said a 17-year-old boy.
To help prepare for upcoming training for magistrates, police officers and social workers, the children made messages that fit their personal experience and that of their classmates and friends. Their messages to the investigative bodies are "not to ask more questions than they have right and actually interested them because they are confusing and scaring us" and "not to share information about us with our teachers and other people who do not have to know ". Keeping anonymity at school and in the circle of friendship are among the things that young people consider to be particularly important. They shared not only one case in which they have witnessed how after committing a particular criminal act, their peers are publicly pointed out, as a result of which his life was completely altered - losing friends, social environment, leaving school, and his parents taking them out of isolation.
Few members of the Board have had a personal experience with the justice, but they all have close friends who have gone through juvenile justice system. The subject is excited live and their points of view are extremely important to be heard and taken into account by those involved in the application of the law.