Juvenile Justice in Mali - BICE - ONG de protection des droits de l'enfant

Juvenile Justice in Mali

In Mali, the juvenile justice system is governed by national laws and the Child Protection Code of 2002. However, there is no decree implementing the law on compulsory education in the case of imprisonment. The age of criminal responsibility is 13 years old, as in France. There is a public institution specialized in the juvenile detention of boys and girls in Mali. The four main offenses committed by children are: Theft (38%) Assault (18%) Vagrancy (11%) Rape (10%) Although laws and procedures have been put in place to protect the rights of children in conflict with the law, their implementation is erratic.  


BICE fights for restorative justice

Present in Mali since 1996, BICE formed a partnership with the BNCE Mali in 2011, to work on the issue of children in conflict with the law.

The “Childhood Without Bars” programme seeks to:

  • Create a favorable legal environment for children in conflict with the law
  • Train civil society, communities and families to respect children’s rights
  • Communicate and advocate for children’s rights


  • Support for children in prison
  • Psychosocial and health support (basic hygiene)
  • Occupational therapy workshops (keyrings/handbags/decoration)
  • Legal support: search for alternatives to imprisonment for children incarcerated in the Bolet prison (girls and boys)
  • Family rehabilitation and monitoring to prevent recurrence,
  • Educational and professional follow-up for children in conflict with the law, in partnership with the Chamber of Trade.

Key figures per year

  • 200 adolescents in conflict with the law
  • 350 members of the family circle of minors (parents, guardians, communities …)
  • 60 people involved in juvenile justice (judges, staff, police …)
  • 200 social workers in detention centres
  • 50 members of the media informed about the juvenile justice system (radio, TV, newspapers …)

    and on...