Adolescence is generally perceived as starting with puberty and ending when young people begin to transition into adulthood by taking up “adult roles” such as employment, parenting and marriage.1 This includes young people between the ages of 12 and 24.2 For many young people these transitions into adulthood may happen at an earlier age or may be postponed in a context of rising youth unemployment and job insecurity. Nevertheless, adolescents are generally considered as entering a stage with a higher level of risk.3
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As young adults move further away from home and family in search of connections with peers, risk-taking behaviour and their exposure to and engagement with different forms of violence may increase. In addition, structural factors such as poor quality education, economic hardship, unemployment, and family and community vulnerability may lead young people to be attracted to crime and gang membership.
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