World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Jamaican Children Need Hope To Resist Violence

Jamaican children need hope to resist violence, says ex-soldier and UN Advocate

1 May 2008 - Jamaican children need more opportunities, support and hope to resist and rise above violence, former child soldier and United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Advocate for Children Affected by War Ishmael Beah said at the end of a two-day visit to the Caribbean nation.

The 27-year-old Beah, who was forced as a child to fight in Sierra Leone's civil war, and was assisted with his rehabilitation by UNICEF, met with children in districts of Jamaica's capital, Kingston, which have been marred by violence. He discussed ways to stay away from gangs and to navigate difficult situations without resorting to violence.

"My life was all about weapons, drugs and violence," he said during his visit. "Now I teach people to resist violence and to use that energy to do other positive things with their lives. I encourage them to see that it is possible to have a life outside of violence."

Violence is a major threat to children in Jamaica, where 87 per cent of those aged 2 to 14 are subjected to at least one form of psychological or physical punishment. Only 28 per cent of children think their communities are safe. Children are pressed into gang warfare, where they are used as spies and look-outs and are often forced to conceal and use guns.

"Every child has the capacity to do great things," Mr. Beah said at a presentation to the University of the West Indies. "No one wants to take up a gun. It is circumstances that push children into violence. What you provide and how you engage with children is what makes the difference. It is possible to refocus and reshape their lives."

ENDS

Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives | RSS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC