This may be a long post but please do read it:
The Ugandan Civil War
Since the early 1980s, the region of Northern Uganda has been in a state of civil unrest. For twenty-three years, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), led by Joseph Kony, has been violently fighting and rebelling against the Ugandan government, claiming it was due to the policies that the government had against the Acholi people of Uganda. The LRA has also been abducting children to become fighters and porters for the rebels. The LRA is an insurgent group, or a group that rises in active revolt, and when the fighting between both the LRA and the Ugandan government became even heavier in 1996, the Government of Uganda (GOU) encouraged people in the affected areas to relocate, especially the Acholi people, who, ironically, continued to be the hardest hit by the war. After numerous bombings of different public locations in the late 1990s, both the LRA and the GOU were ready to solve things politically in 2003, but not before the government suffered heavily economically and hundreds of thousands of people became homeless as a result of war. The LRA had also expanded into the nations of Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo, all the while their child soldiers making up most of their military population. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni had made an agreement with Sudan to allow the GOU military to enter and attack the LRA bases in Sudan. With the LRA successfully weakened, the GOU forces were able to capture many of the rebels and by 2005, and had them in a position where both sides could discuss a peace treaty. Joseph Kony, the LRA leader, was charged with crimes against humanity such as the abduction of children and sexual enslavement. In 2006, the Ugandan people were relieved about the possible peace treaty and an end to the fighting, but the fighting continued nonetheless.
The Child Soldiers:
As if the wars that persist in these countries weren’t violent enough, children are being forced to partake in this violence. Although many join voluntarily in hopes of a better situation than the one that they live in at home, many others are violently abducted in the night and forced to brutally kill numerous people. In Uganda, they find that really it’s not at all better than at home, and there is nothing good waiting for the child soldiers. But by then, it’s too late. They are threatened by their leaders and forced to stay to fight, lest they be killed. Around the age of ten years old, many children in these war-stricken areas are already proficient in handling guns. Also around this age, many children are kidnapped into the many militias fighting in these different wars. In many nations, such as the DRC and Sierra Leone, children are given drugs so that during battle, they will have no fears. The youngest are put on the front line in hopes that their unpredictability and courage will help them during battle. But in no way do the children’s parents (those who still have parents) accept them back into their household after they manage to end their career as a child soldier. Many families ostracize their children for fear that the local militia will come after their family. Especially when these children have killed within their own village, they cannot return home.
That is the pitiful life of the child soldiers. But the kids do not deserve to live in such a brutal environment. They are kids… they deserve to live under the warmth of their parents’ hug and not be shunned away by their own parents.
So what is “INVISIBE CHILDREN”:
They are storytellers. They are visionaries, humanitarians, artists, and entrepreneurs.They are individuals part of a generation eager for change and willing to pursue it.
As a non-profit they work to transform apathy into activism. By documenting the lives of those living in regions of conflict and injustice, they hope to educate and inspire individuals in the Western world to use their unique voice for change. Their media creates an opportunity for people to become part of a grassroots movement that intelligently responds to what’s happening in the world.
But their work extends beyond their borders. In war-affected regions they focus on long-term development, working directly with individuals and institutions that are eager to realize their full potential. Through education and innovative economic opportunities, they partner with affected communities and strive to improve the quality of life for individuals living in conflict and post-conflict regions.
So What Can YOU do?
I’m sure you would’ve noticed the social vibe button on the right side. Click on it and take part in some of the activities and earn some hours of schooling for a Ugandan child. This is your chance to mark your presence in this world. Make a difference after all taking part in that activity is not going to cost you even a dime.
Please click the social vibe icon… be the difference you like to see.