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Toolkit on Diversion and Alternatives to Detention

Overcoming obstacles

• Introduction
• Common obstacles & solutions
• How to cope if obstacles cannot be overcome
• Summary

Working from an approach which acknowledges people's and organisations' strengths is psychologically important. Many justice projects take place in extremely complex and challenging environments and it can be easy to become discouraged - hence the need to guard against this. This section includes a core document containing a list of common obstacles faced in relation to diversion and alternatives with guidance on how to overcome them, based on international experience.

The obstacles and solutions here are by no means exhuastive. UNICEF encourages readers to share further obstacles and/or solutions for inclusion in future updates of this toolkit. Please send information via the email included in the 'acknowledgements' section.

This section also includes information on how to cope if obstacles cannot be overcome.
Common obstacles & solutions
Download the core document:
'Common obstacles related to diversion and alternatives with some suggested solutions' [Word 114kb]
How to cope if obstacles cannot be overcome
Given the context of much child justice reform, there are sometimes situations and obstacles beyond the control of the stakeholders. It is important to recognise when you are wasting time and resources on something that cannot be changed at this point in time. Explore ways to work around the obstacle; work on other areas in the meantime; and keep revisiting the original obstacle to check if circumstances have changed which enable you to make progress. Timing and finding the right window of opportunity is of the essence.
Processes need to be participatory, child rights-based and systemic and take advantage of the practical experiences and lessons learned in this section. It is important to recognise at what point it becomes more strategic to divert time and resources away from initiatives if obstacles become temporarily unsurmountable due to circumstances beyond the control of key stakeholders. These obstacles should nonethless be kept under surveillance in order to identify when original circumstances change and opportunites become available to move forward on diversion and alternatives once more.




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