Educating And Re-Integrating Former Girl Soldiers Of The Northern Ugandan War: Opportunities And Limitations For Community Media
Northern Uganda was embroiled in a two-decade war between the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) and Ugandan army. During the war, about 30,000 children were abducted by LRA soldiers and used as child soldiers. Many of these were primary and high school girls. These girls were raped, abused and used as girl soldiers. The war ended in 2006, and most of the girls returned to their communities as outcasts, unskilled and uneducated. They have peculiar needs: some have children born from rapes, STD's and are past school enrolment age. Rehabilitation of these former girl soldiers has been arduous, and many social agents are being involved. These agents include local and community media. // Available evidence shows that there are efforts by some of the media organisations to support and promote the education and reintegration process. Through programmes, news and collaboration with governmental, non-governmental and community-based organisations, some local and community newspapers and radio attempt to educate both the former girl soldiers and their communities on rehabilitation and reconciliation. Efforts at equipping the girls on income-generating activities are also supported by some of the local media. However, many local and community media organisations avoid this important social responsibility. // What political, economic, training and technical factors promote or impede the contributions of the local and community media to the education and reintegration of former girl soldiers? How do these explain involvement and non-involvement of the local media in the reintegration process? What impact have the media efforts had on the former girl soldiers? // Through content analysis and in-depth interviews of media workers and former girl soldiers, we propose to answer foregoing questions. These answers will be fodder for specific policy, pedagogical and interventionist recommendations. // Paper ID: 158
AuthorOwacgiu, Jackline A
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