I was very intrigued when I was reading the information on child soldiers. It was heart wrenching to see the types of horrible acts children are forced to commit and the situations they live in. While learning about child soldiers, I learned there are multiple reasons, as to why, children live a life of death and violence. Children become child soldiers for many reasons, but without knowing when, where, or why a child is joining, it can be very difficult for organizations to stop it from happening.
According the UNICEF fact sheet on child soldiers, it is estimated that over 300,000 children are involved in more than 30 conflicts worldwide (UNICEF, 2013). Many of the 300,000 children are taken away from their home forcibly and made to fight in the war. I couldn’t imagine going to sleep, walking home, or just playing in the yard and always fearing that it could be the last time you see your family; which is something many children have to fear everyday. While watching the video Lost Children - Uganda's Youngest Soldiers, I was very sadden to see that hundreds of children have to go into the city at night and sleep on the streets in fear that they will be kidnapped from their homes. While this has saved many children, from being kidnapped, most are not so lucky.
According to the research conducted by Daya Somasundaram, some children volunteer to join the war. Some of the reasons why children volunteer include witnessing the death of relatives; destruction of homes; displacement; economic difficulties; political oppression, and harassment (Somasundaram, D. 2002). Children are sometimes asked by their parents to join because they are in extreme poverty and have no other option. Others are harassed and fear for their lives so they join under the impression they will be allowed to live; others do it for revenge for a killed family member. Children are so susceptible and precious that no matter what the reason they should never have to endure that type of situation.
There are different international conventions in place to stop child soldiering, but they can be hindered because of the difficulties of never knowing when a child will join...