A juvenile is defined as one who is under the age of 18. Therefore, juvenile delinquency refers to the criminal or antisocial activity carried out by a child below 18 years and these acts are often in violation of the law (Burfeind & Bartusch, 2015). Accordingly, some of these felonies or offences include homicide, sexual crimes, property and drug violations and violent crimes. The commission of these acts are done in groups compared to individuals. Globally, the number of crimes carried out by juveniles has been on the increase in the past and recent years. The center for criminal disease indicated that the number of juveniles involved in criminal acts amounted to 22.5% of the total property crimes in 2010. The number of juveniles arrested for murder was 784, forcible rape was 2198 while for assault was 35,000 in the same year. In the past years, there have been academic and public interest in mental health and criminality and there has been a major focus on the adolescents’ and children’ antisocial behaviours. The scale of the juvenile delinquency problem has led to a series of mixed responses from the media and governments all over the globe. This has prompted the calling for support and rehabilitation for juvenile offenders in order to successfully integrate them into the community. To this end, this paper aims at providing a comprehensive explanation of the factors leading to juvenile delinquency, and the appropriate methods of prevention of these acts.

Factors for delinquency
These factors are grouped into mainly risk and protective factors.
i. Risk factors
The risk factors are divided into individual, family, community, peer and social risk factors. Firstly, the individual risk factors include learning disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, low intelligence quotient, violent discrimination and drug abuse. Secondly, the family factors include negligent, permissive and authoritarian parenting styles, low income for parents, harsh disciplinary methods and poor teen monitoring. Thirdly, the community risk factors include but are not limited to minimized economic opportunities poor participation in the community and neighbors that are socially disorganized. The fourth risk factor is that of social and peer factors and it dictates the relationship of delinquent peers, involvement in gangs, media violence exposure and poor school commitment that translates to poor performance in academics (Shoemaker, 2017). Apparently, male adolescents have a higher chance of becoming offenders compared to the females. On the same note, the youth from poor backgrounds have more chances of involvement in criminal activities.
ii. Protective factors
The protective and individual factors are interconnected. Individual factors including good performances in academics, good social skills, religiosity, high intelligence quotient are connected to being connected to parents and the style of parenting. Additional factors include efficient monitoring, good strategies of coping, and solving of problems. Social and peer factors are connected to commitment in schools, strong relation among peers and the involvement in pro-social issues (Shoemaker, 2017).
Preventing juvenile delinquency
There have been different studies that have proposed ways of preventing juvenile delinquency and the approach of the development of the youth in a positive aspect has been a major issue that has been raised. Another model lays emphasis on the six main domains including work, education, community, relationships, creativity and health. Each and every youth requires a sense of attachment and belonging, in order to fully understand and integrate well in the parameters provided by the community (Ryan, Williams & Courtney, 2013). A community and school programme can also be important in the efforts aimed at engaging adolescents in a constructive and productive manner. these programs are also important in the recognition, utilization and enhancement of the strengths of the adolescents and the promotion of positive results for the young people. this is attained through the provision of opportunities, fostering relationships that are beneficial and improving their support that they need in order to enhance their business strengths. The means of tackling these types of offences does not involve only incarceration or preventive efforts for this specific group. An alternative approach is that of restorative justice which is part of the criminal justice. Restorative justice involves a process in which all parties having a stake in a particular issue or offence join or team up and determine collectively on how to deal with the offence and its subsequent implications for the future. The offender works closely with the social workers and takes the necessary steps in efforts aimed at reconciliation, provision of remedial assistance and reparation of damages (Thompson & Bynum, J. E. (2016). In case there is a resolution, perpetuation of offence or imprisonment is capable of being avoided. These methods have led to a decline in recidivism amongst juveniles by 50%. The ineffective methods include but are not limited to traditional psychotherapy, modification of behaviour, boot camp and extension of incarceration. However, each programme aimed at prevention should be socially and culturally consistent and appropriate.
This paper clearly shows that youth delinquency has become a major problem and it is a growing concern. Many young criminal offenders are victims with their needs, which leads to an approach that needs balancing of justice and welfare models. Regardless, there are inadequate specialists’ workforce and legal frameworks to handle these issues.

Burfeind, J., & Bartusch, D. J. (2015). Juvenile delinquency: An integrated approach. Routledge.
Ryan, J. P., Williams, A. B., & Courtney, M. E. (2013). Adolescent neglect, juvenile delinquency and the risk of recidivism. Journal of youth and adolescence, 42(3), 454-465.
Shoemaker, D. J. (2017). Juvenile delinquency. Rowman & Littlefield.
Thompson, W. E., & Bynum, J. E. (2016). Juvenile delinquency: A sociological approach. Rowman & Littlefield.