We promote respect for the rights and dignity of children providing them with assistance to alleviate the effects of armed conflict
Children in War Zones
Protecting children in armed conflict
Children are the first victims during the war. 2018 was a particularly awful year for children growing up in conflict zones around the world.
Children are especially vulnerable to abuse, exploitation, and trafficking during emergencies and armed conflicts. During times of crisis, we work to care for children who have been separated from their families, to create protective "child-friendly" spaces and to offer medical treatment and counseling.
In countries experiencing conflict and upheaval such as South Sudan and South Kordofan regions, we protect children from military conscription, works to stop trafficking and helps child soldiers reintegrate into their communities.
Children living in countries at war have come under direct attack, used as human shields, maimed or recruited to fight. Sexual assault, forced marriage, and abduction have become standard tactics in conflicts around the globe.
We advocate for protecting children and women in conflict from the systematic sexual violence that is increasingly used as a weapon of war and works to help victims of that abuse. Without protection from violence and exploitation, the basic survival and development of children at risk.
There are millions of children that have been forced from their homes by violence and insecurity, plus those that remain in life-threatening situations and face grave violations.
In South Sudan, armed groups have recruited thousands of children into their ranks. Jackson, 12, (left) and Ganiko, 13, were among a group of more than 200 children released by militias in Yambio, South Sudan in April 2018. The children receive medical attention, counseling and vocational training in a reintegration.
While the promise of a revitalized peace agreement offers a glimmer of hope for children, reports of extreme violence against women and children continue, most recently in Bentiu, where more than 150 women and girls were the victims of horrific sexual assault.
A structure in a medical compound in the Nuba mountains damaged by a bomb dropped on their location.
Separation From Families
As for any other civilian, we promote respect for the rights and dignity of children providing them with assistance to alleviate the effects of armed conflict.
We assist children separated from their families because of war by tracing families across borders. We register them and try to find the family in order to re-establish contact.
We prevent children from being detained with adults - unless, in some exceptional circumstances, this is in their best interests.
We ensure they have access to food, water, health facilities, education, and so on.
We prevent recruitment from occurring in the first place, but should that fail, we rehabilitate former child soldiers and provide them with psychological help to recuperate from Post-traumatic syndrome disorder, depression and re-enter society healed trauma.
We are actively involved in promoting knowledge of humanitarian law and other fundamental standards, thus demobilize many children from being recruit as child soldiers.
We aim to provide assistance to all victims of war to protect their life and health and to alleviate suffering.
The assistance provided is in accordance with assessed needs.
Children's basic needs are essentially similar to those of adults, such as food, water, shelter, health care, etc. Because of their age, we can anticipate that they would have additional, specific needs that we strive to meet.
This ranges from providing baby parcels, specific health care for mothers and children, educational materials and other items.
The rights guaranteed by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, almost universally ratified, are applicable during armed conflict.
Experience has proven that most unaccompanied children have parents or other family members willing and able to care for them, who can be found if tracing is effective.
Educating Former Child Soldiers
The right to access to education does not cease because of a conflict. Education has a crucial part to play in fulfilling the needs and rights of children in conflict and post-conflict situations – both in terms of prevention and rehabilitation.
In terms of a child's psycho-social health, education offers a regular routine, opportunities for self-expression and the chance to engage with peers. The very status of " student " is valuable in that it may provide protection for the child from forced recruitment.
Although at the same time, they remain at risk as children have been recruited while at school. Schools may provide essential life-skills particularly vital in conflict situations.
And last but not least, what children learn at school is one of the few things that cannot be taken away from them no matter where they go!
We coordinate with other humanitarian organizations to ensure that children receive appropriate assistance during war and emergencies.
The task of what to do with each victim depends on our mandate, expertise, and capacity to deal with the given situation.
Your support provides opportunities for vulnerable women and young people in war zones and other vulnerable victims of injustice to access clean water as well as hygiene and sanitation programs.
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