A recent conversation I had with an (almost) former victim of child soldiers abduction from Uganda, proved to be rather enlightening. It has ensued in the realisation that education and economic development are viable alternatives, but they are not long-term solutions that address the root causes of Child Soldiers. These scenarios of the indoctrination of children in conflict-torn countries go beyond that of simple charity donations. Is education the answer?
No NGOs or advocacy networks are in the capacity to demolise these children from rebel armed groups and thus, international organizations like UNICEF and Amnesty International play a vital role in peeling off the first layer. However, NGOs can rally support and raise awareness amongst the community and in that way, a tripartite co-operation between international orgs, advocacy networks and the community is crucial in paving the way for a long-term solution, if any, for child soldiers.
Watch this disconcertingly real video by Amnesty International that depicts two disparate yet intertwined lives – one of a child soldier, and the other a normal child.