PROJECTS: Forward Peace- reconciliation in Uganda: Stills: Forward Peace
Northern Uganda is home to tens of thousands of former child-soldiers, many of which were said to have been part of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The LRA, a militant group formed in 1987, was an outgrowth or continuation of the Lords Salvation Army and was very active in the de-establishment of northern Uganda. Over the course of the 20-year conflict, millions of lives were destroyed and irreparable acts were committed against civilians, often at the hands of these young militants.
While the war is over the impact on these war-wearied people has been substantial emotionally, physically, and culturally. Post-conflict rebuilding is a slow and arduous task, especially in remote areas like the northern Uganda/South Sudan border. While some of the war-affected areas have received significant aid and have made major strides towards reconciliation ---in particular Gulu town, the northern capitol-- the more remote rural regions has been almost void of assistance and counseling since the war ended. In these areas many former combatants still live through daily persecution, stigmatized for their role in the war. These young men and women continue to be forced to deal with their demons both personally and publically. Their childhoods were stolen, and most are severely undereducated and are now stigmatized labeled as ‘child soldiers’. Despite many acts of reconciliation on the part of these ex-soldiers, there is still a long road-ahead to make amends in their communities.
This is a small glance into what their lives look like today.
-Multimedia story to come