n Commonwealth Youth and Development - Child soldiers in African wars

Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1727-7140



Studies conducted in Africa showed that child soldiers proved not to be inherently vulnerable and passive victims of social and psychological trauma, as the general viewpoint might have it. Research revealed that some youth voluntarily joined armed groups for practical and functional reasons, such as for protection and survival. They have proven to be active participants in the war, resilient in the midst of conflict and to have employed effective coping mechanisms to rebuild their lives in post-conflict situations.

The aim of this article is to discuss how conflict influences child soldiers and how they demonstrate abilities to survive, negotiate and protect themselves in their social environment.

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