Recently, the NY Times reported that 224 boys and 87 girls were freed within the 2nd-largest release by an armed group since the conflict started; several hundred more are predicted to transition within the coming weeks.
World Vision, which has done work in South Sudan since the year 1989 and presently reaches a million people who are displaced by conflict, obtained the children last Wednesday and are going to oversee their reunification and recovery.
With high poverty levels, widespread displacement, as well as a lack of education, youth in what is ranked as the globe’s most fragile state are especially susceptible targets for armed groups.
The U.N. coordinated the release of nearly 2,000 of 19,000 youth kidnapped and recruited since the civil war started in the year 2013.
The reintegration program by World Vision gets support from UNICEF, or the United Nations Children’s Fund. Case workers who work with World Vision within the city of Yambio, moving forward, are going to work with youth in recovery, provide vocational and school training, and offer interim care for the ones who do not have the ability to find their families.
In 2011, S. Sudan gained independence, which made it the youngest nation within the world. Although the central African country is around 60% Christian, it still ranks amongst the worst places for the persecution of Christians.
In other news coverage that followed this news release, teenagers described their responsibilities as fighters, lookouts, and bodyguards, traumatized by the murders they saw. The majority reported being kidnapped and then forced into one of the warring factions, Sudan People’s Liberation Army in Opposition or the S. Sudan National Liberation Movement.
Beyond the ones recruited by fighters, many more have suffered and witnessed killings during the 5-year civil war. According to the United Nations, one million youth in S. Sudan are going to need psychological support because of “displacement, separation, loss of family members, and the emotional impact of conflict.”
Christians who are serving in areas of conflict served as trauma counseling resources, and faith has been shown to assist survivors in building resilience instead of despair in the wake of violence and terror.
South Sudan, at the same time, has suffered shortages of water and food as a result of the war. UNICEF made an estimation last month that 1/4 million youth were “at risk of imminent death” from malnutrition.
Aid workers with Samaritan’s Purse (an evangelical charity) in 2017, were kidnapped by armed rebels then later released. Fighters routinely exercise violence against aid workers and attempt to block distributions.
South Sudan’s Council of Churches continuously prays for peace and asks for humanitarian help.
LLEM International Christian Missionary Organization has a mandate of reaching out to the basic needs of men, women and children. We aim to empower and impact lives. We present the word of God as a solution to global crisis. Our goal is to help as many hurting humans as we possibly can. We strive to eliminate human suffering and to express love as a fundamental element for human development and international cooperation. We provide food, clothing, educational materials, and medical care to the less privileged throughout the world. Please be our partner in helping children who cannot help themselves and whose parents cannot help them. All donations are truly appreciated; give your donation here.