The world's forgotten conflict
Raped, shot, abused, traumatised: just a few of the things happening to a generation of innocent children in the Central African Republic.
War Child research released today finds that atrocities have been committed against children as young as three years old, and 40% of the most vulnerable children have lost their fathers in the bloodshed.
Children have been directly targeted by all sides.
We spoke to a 12-year-old girl who told War Child: “A bullet hit my house while I was in bed. A soldier broke into my house and raped me.”
We were also horrified to hear of a three-year-old girl who had gone missing from her home, only to be found bleeding as a result of being raped.
While donors fail to respond to an 80% funding gap in urgent humanitarian aid, children are forced to witness the murder and rape of their own parents.
War Child report
Our report released today – A Vicious Cycle for Children – demonstrates the impact of long-term neglect of this cyclical crisis. Right now, violence is spread across CAR with 2.3 million children affected by the crisis countrywide.
War Child CEO Rob Williams said, “Every day the crisis in the Central African Republic is worsening – and children are the innocent victims.
“Children in War Child centres in Bangui are presenting some of the worst stories we have seen in any conflict zone.”
The data collected from hundreds of the most vulnerable children identified by us reveals:
- 42% of displaced children have lost their fathers.
- 11% of displaced children have been orphaned.
- Almost 10% of woman and girls interviewed before the latest violence had been raped.
- 95% of girls and 75% of boys said they needed support to cope with psychological trauma.
Child protection and education
War Child is calling on donors, including the UK government, to urgently increase immediate and long-term support to the country.
Child protection and education must be prioritised to prevent the growing number of atrocities and ensure that children are not only alive, but also safe.
War Child is one of the few organisations that has worked in CAR since 2011.
We're currently providing Safe Spaces in camps for children who have been forced to flee their homes.