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Girl Soldier: A Story of Hope for Northern Uganda's Children

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Kristina Probst

on 27 February 2014

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Transcript of Girl Soldier: A Story of Hope for Northern Uganda's Children

1. Media Attention
2. Sexual Violence amongst
3. Government actions
4. International Relief
5. Faith's Call to Action
Global Intervention: When/Why
Who is Joseph Kony?
Reintegration/Rehabilitation- Frannie
Prevention/Intervention- Barry
Background : History of Uganda
Girl Soldier: A Story of Hope for Northern Uganda's Children

Presented by: Amber, Barry, Frannie, Jessica, Kristy
Community Contract
Media Attention
Joseph Kony 2012: What ever happened to Invisible Children?
Sexual Violence Amongst Rescuers
1. Once children escape from their abductors, they are not free from SV.

2. Reporters and NGO workers are also subject to SV.

3. Continued marginalization of women in the recovery efforts.
Government Actions
1. U.S. and ICC involvement in prosecution of LRA criminals

2. Has Uganda "washed their hands"?

3. Ugandan anti-gay legislation
International Relief Organizations
1. Relief organizations such as Invisible Children may be over-simplifying the issues in order to secure funding for their own interests.

2. Government oversight on organizations such as Childers' orphanage? If the government is still corrupt or low-functioning, how does this impact oversight?
Faith's Call To Action
1. High level engagement by the U.S. Government

2. U.S. leadership in mobilizing the international community to put global pressure on combatants to protect children and to end the conflict

3. Providing more resources to help people suffering because of this conflict.
Brain-storm values you think community members would hold in order for reintegration of child soldiers, especially girl child soldiers to be successful
How do we define successful reintegration?
Would a community member in a village in Uganda define it the same way?
Brain-storm behaviors community members would have to live for successful integration
What is relevant to the success of reintegration of former child soldiers?

1. Community sensitization.
2. Formal disarmament and demobilization.
3. Transition period in separate centers (children located well away from adult DDR sites).
4. Tracing and family mediation.
5. Return to family, community and follow-up, and extended monitoring for children not placed with their parents.
6. Traditional cleansing ceremonies, traditional healing, and religious support.
7. School or skills training of adequate quality and duration, coupled with literacy and numeracy instruction and provision of tools, materials, and follow-up counseling.
8. Ongoing access to health care, particularly for war-related conditions, for those in school or training.
9. Individual supportive counseling, facilitation, and encouragement.

Cannot attend during formal school hours because they must earn their own income or contribute to family livelihood;

Their families cannot afford school fees, supplies and uniforms;

Schools were destroyed or there is a lack of teachers in their community;

They have difficulty getting documentation for
enrollment, or they are not allowed to join at the same grade as younger children;

They feel shame or resentment about going to
school with much younger children.
Nyono tong gweno ("stepping on the egg"):
intended for those who return home after a long period of time
meant to cleanse a person of the ills that he or she may have contracted while traveling
The egg is said to symbolize purity. 'The egg has no mouth, and cannot speak ill of others.' The egg also symbolizes that which is 'soft,' 'fragile,' suggesting a restoration of innocence.
the returnee stepping on an egg (tongweno) placed on a 'slippery branch' (opobo) and a stick with a fork (layebi), traditionally used to open grainerie
Opobo is a soapy, slippery branch, which helps to cleanse the returnee from any external influences he or she might have encountered in the 'bush' that might be calling them back.

The layebi is a symbol of welcoming a person back into the home, where the family members will once again share food together."9
Constraints to Education
Violence against his own
Initial popularity of Kony & the LRA waned in the early 90's as a result of their increasing violence against civilians, including fellow Acholi

Uses biblical references to explain why it is necessary to kill his own people
Where is Kony now?
Kony's Rise to Power

Background: Lord's Resistance Army
Background: Joseph Kony
Background: Night Commuting
Background: Child Soldiers
Quiz Time!!
True or False:

1. Josephy Kony is believed to have been killed in an attack last year.

2. Children volunteer to become part of the LRA after their parents are killed.

3. Female child soldiers are presented to the LRA members as wives.

4. Kony’s original movement was started as a religious, antigovernment campaign.

5. Children are forced to walk long distances throughout the night because their parents have abandoned them.

Born in the early 1960's

Ethnic Acholi by birth

Rose to power on the heels of Alice Lakwena and the Holy Spirit Movement

Claims to be a spirit medium, practicing a blend of Christianity and local spiritual customs

Maintains control through fear and mysticism
Kony: In his own words
"If the Acholi don't support us, they must be finished"
In 2006, the Ugandan military pushed the LRA across the border into southern Sudan

Kony and the LRA now commit their atrocities in South Sudan, Central African Republic, and D.R. Congo

Continues to evade capture today
Some report Kony and the LRA are receiving support from the government of Sudan.

Is Sudan using LRA as a tool to perpetuate instability in the wake of tensions with South Sudan? Sudan denies the accusations.
Government Support?
Kony's Legacy
Between 1987 & 2006 at least 20,000 children abducted in Uganda

More than 1.9 million displaced

Tens of thousands of Ugandan civilians died

In CAR, D.R. Congo & Sudan - since September 2008 the LRA has killed more than 2,600 civilians and abducted more than 4,000 other people, many of them children
Why is Kony still at large?
LAR estimated to number "only" between 150-300 soldiers

Move on foot in small separate groups with their fighters and abductees through remote bush terrain between the borders of Congo, CAR, and South Sudan.

They do not have permanent camps, avoid roads and often make great efforts to cover their tracks.

Communicate by sending messages via runners, letters posted on trees or left under rocks, or occasional face-to-face meetings at pre-determined locations in isolated areas.

Given the diminishing power of Kony & the LAR, how important do you think it is that Kony be apprehended and turned over to the ICC (as opposed being killed or dying in the bush)?

Does the capture of Kony warrant greater effort than holding corrupt governments accountable for their past human rights violations?
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