IRI-supported youth established a burgeoning and increasingly impactful anti-corruption organization in Guanajuato state, Mexico. Corruption and youth apathy towards political engagement are longstanding challenges to Mexico’s democratic development. Recognizing the intersection of these challenges, IRI supports youth to understand the effects of corruption on their lives and communities and empowers them with skills and resources to advocate for transparency at the state level. After attending a series of IRI anti-corruption education initiatives, six young participants from the Mexican state of Guanajuato founded the Red Estatal de Jóvenes Anticorrupción (State Anticorruption Youth Network) or REJA. REJA is now a network of approximately 30 Guanajuanto university students committed to motivating other young people in the state to become involved in the fight against corruption.

Since March 2023, REJA members have facilitated a series of workshops on anti-corruption for 1,828 individuals and participated in nine anticorruption discussions with representatives of the State Anti-Corruption System of Guanajuato. These discussions provided a platform for young REJA members to engage high-level government officials, and express their ideas, priorities, and suggestions on a range of anti-corruption topics, including gender issues, crimes related to corruption, corruption sanctions, audit and internal control measures, and the functioning of the National and State Anti-Corruption System. Notably, these anti-corruption discussions were held in different municipalities across Guanajuato, taking these youth-driven messages to places that have previously had neither exposure to anti-corruption initiatives nor experience with youth engagement on these key issues. REJA is now becoming a formally registered non-governmental organization and the network continues to grow. IRI is proud to have supported REJA’s founders in their initial start-up and looks forward to continuing to support REJA as they motivate and engage youth in the political process and fight for transparency and anti-corruption efforts in Mexico.

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