UNICEF launches guides for girls formerly associated with armed groups

By Kitab A. Unango

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has launched a practical guide for effective reintegration of girl child formerly associated with armed groups.

The guide manuals which include psycho social support facilitators’ manuals, training guide and the practical guide for the socio-economic reintegration will help both the government and organisations in ensuring girls were included in the integration processes.

The manuals will help government, girl child activists, organisations and social workers to identify, improve and provide services to girls and children who had been associating with armed groups before reintegrated in to their families

Speaking during the launch at Land Mark Hotel in Juba yesterday, Peter Garang Ngor, Director General of Operation of National Demobilization, Disarmament and Reintegration Commission commended UNICEF and said the manuals will help the government to locate girls formerly associated with the armed groups

“These practical guides will help us to plan together with UNICEF, Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare to know where girls formerly associated with armed forces are and meet their needs,” Garang said.

Regina Ossa Lullo said the launch of the manuals came at the time the country was implementation peace which required reintegration of former child soldiers and girls associated with armed forces.

“The manuals will help children and girls who have been associated with armed forces and even in schools. It is very important and it has come at the right time. It will help and support children who have problems.”

“It will help them because they have been in trauma so that they settle and be like other children in some parts of the world,” she added.

Jean Lieby, UNICEF Child Chief Protection Officer said girls were usually neglected during reintegration processes despite their association with armed groups.

He said the manuals will guide actors to ensure girls formerly associated with armed forces were given mental support and needs required for them to be integrated into their community.

Lieby thanked the donors who contributed to the program and promised that UNICEF’s support to the government in ensuring children in South Sudan were given their rights.

The launch was attended by senior government official, representatives from the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare, National Demobilization, Disarmament and Reiteration Commission, donors, national and international organizations.

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