1 In Every 4 Children Robbed Off Childhood; Save The Children

One quarter of the world's children are being denied a childhood, a new report from Save the Children has revealed.

1 In Every 4 Children Robbed Off Childhood; Save The Children

JUBA, 16 June 2017 [Gurtong] – According to Save the Children, the report released today Friday, includes a global index ranking the places where childhood is most and least threatened.

Launched to coincide with Day of the African Child, the Stolen Childhoods report has found that at least 700 million children—and possibly hundreds of millions more—have had the promise of a full childhood brought to an early end.

The reasons vary from extreme violence and conflict, often driving families from their homes; early marriage and pregnancy; child labour, poor health and not being able to go to school.

The index finds that childhoods in West and Central Africa are most threatened. South Sudan is ranked number 8th above the lowest countries. The countries where childhood is the least threatened—Norway, Slovenia, Finland, the Netherlands, and Sweden—are all located in Europe.

For the first time, Save the Children examined the impact of child homicide, and found that every day, more than 200 boys and girls around the world are murdered.

Deirdre Keogh, Save the Children’s Country Director in South Sudan said: “Children growing up in conflict, being displaced from their homes or dying from preventable disease, are being robbed of everything that makes them children. It is unacceptable that in 2017, millions of children around the world still do not have their right to be safe, learn, grow and play. We must, and we can, do better than this.”

In South Sudan there are many harrowing stories of childhood Enders that are not often reported.

Ayen* is a 15-year old girl was forced to marry when she was still young she told me, “My father mistreated me by giving me a man who is not my age match.  He’s an old man and he is also a drunkard, but my father tried to force me to marry him. That’s why I escaped from home. I told him it’s not good for me to be married to this old man, and that he should let me look for another man.  When my father refused I escaped to my grandmother’s place but he brought me back and caned me seriously.  My father wanted me to marry the man because of the dowry, because he had money.”
“After canning me, he tied my legs with a rope so that I could not escape again. I slept with my legs tied. Afterwards I called my younger brother to bring a knife to remove the rope, and then I escaped. On the first night after I left I stayed under a mango tree by the roadside for two days. But I heard that they were looking for me, so I decided to kill myself.  I went to the river to drown myself.  But a lady (Alek) found me and called me. I was crying, but she took me home.”
The report also found that:

Every day, across the world more than 16,000 children die before reaching their fifth birthday, the vast majority from preventable causes.

According to Save the Children, about one quarter of all children under five (156 million) in the world today have their physical growth and mental development stunted as a result of malnutrition.

One in six school-aged children worldwide are currently out of school.

Conflict in various countries has forced nearly one child in 80 from their homes.

168 million children in the world are involved in child labour -- 85 million in hazardous work -- which is more than all the children living in Europe (138 millions).

Posted in: Home, Reports
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