Since 2002, February 12 has been set aside as a day to draw attention to the plight of approximately 250,000 child soldiers around the world. Children under the age of 18 are involved in numerous armed conflicts in countries including Afghanistan, Chad, Central African Republic, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), India, Iraq, Israel / Palestine, Myanmar (Burma), Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Thailand and Yemen. Some children are as young as 7 or 8 years of age.
Last year, hundreds and thousands of red hand-prints were collected in more than 50 countries and handed over to politicians and to responsible parties, including UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. Many of these prominent people vowed to make changes.
But it is a long long road. And children are still being used as pawns in wars they know little about.
I’ve always felt that if you want things to change you need to be part of the solution. But you and I have very little control over things like war and horrid governments and rebel groups. But we aren’t powerless to help those who have suffered because of injustice. There’s many organizations that help these children who were once forced to kill or be killed. World Vision Canada has very well respected programs in several countries that provide things like medical support, counselling and education to help save a child of war. They work to help reunite children to loving families and protect others from abduction. And you can help by donating just $75.
So give up a cup of coffee each day this month to be part of the solution. Click here and you’ll go directly to the World Vision Canada website where you can make a difference. It'll make you feel good.
Thank you! Apwoyo matek!
My journey as an author, giving voice to child soldiers.