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Burning Spear News

The Vulnerability of African Children After Disaster: Project Black Ankh’s Response

Jan 16, 2018
William Shaphet Mbwa Mwitu


Terrible housing and non existent infrastructure is a magnet for disaster!

 

Natural and manmade disasters continue to destroy African communities.

From hurricanes to outbreaks of diseases, from earthquakes to civil violence, the most vulnerable are our African children.

The threatening dark cloud of human trafficking, sexual abuse and slave labor, and the recruitment of child soldiers hangs over the droves of misplaced and orphaned African children after a disaster.

The ongoing civil conflict in Southern Sudan has resulted in Africa’s biggest refugee crisis since the Rwandan genocide in 1994.

The fighting has forced 12 million people to flee their homes, of the more than one million that has fled their homes for refugee camps in Uganda, 61 percent are children.

The number of children traveling alone, or with no one but other children has been estimated at 36,000.

Colonialism is breaking African communities,  and leaves the youngest Africans to fend for themselves after further destruction from natural or manmade disasters like civil conflict.

African communities cannot and must not rely on imperialist funded and operated humanitarian aid organizations and so called “peace keeping” missions.

Since the beginning of the 2014 United Nations (UN) peacekeeping mission to the Central African Republic, its employees have been formally accused of sexually abusing or exploiting 42 local Bangui citizens, most of them underage African girls.

African women and girls reported that UN employees exchanged sex for food or money—a pittance—all while African communities struggle to overcome the devastation of civil conflict brought on by imperialism and colonialism.

Of the 2,000 worldwide complaints of sexual abuse from UN peacekeepers, 700 of those complaints of sexual abuse and exploitation have been made in the Democratic Republic of Congo alone.

African children are the victims of impoverished communities where disasters add to the already life-threatening situation.

Even before civil conflict broke out in Southern Sudan, children received on average fewer than five years education.

Many children in Sierra Leone have no family members alive due to the 2014 Ebola outbreak, and now have to line up for food rations after the 2017 mudslide and flooding that left 1,000 Africans, including 150 children dead.

Government officials in the country say that more than 4,000 children have been affected. UNICEF has reported that 15 percent of the 7,000 people registered as affected by the disaster are under the age of 5, while 40 percent are between the ages of 6 and 18.

The All African People’s Development and Empowerment Project (AAPDEP) and its Project Black Ankh (PBA), the African Nation’s disaster response program, have dedicated their mission to the protection of the African Nation’s most vulnerable after sudden onset disaster.

Our African children, misplaced and alone, are seeking safe harbor while the possibility of exploitation and abuse are very real.

Project Black Ankh will be moving ahead with Operation: Sunrise, PBA’s first humanitarian aid mission to Sierra Leone since its 2014 operation at the height of the ebola crisis.

This PBA operation will be centered on a small population of 20 adults and 30 children in Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown.

Many children wander refugee camps, without the ability to go to school, lacking supplies and uniforms with no help from the local neocolonialist government in rebuilding these young lives.

AAPDEP-Sierra Leone and its PBA volunteer teams are now on the ground performing detailed assessments of the situation to give these vulnerable children a second chance after catastrophe and hopelessness.

Project Black Ankh will intervene to provide much needed food aid and basic educational materials to enable children to start school again after the disaster.

Temporary shelters are all the protection that these children have while local government officials are unable to help and imperialist humanitarian aid organizations struggle with a deliberate lack of capacity to rescue our vulnerable African children.

Rice, textbooks, pencils, uniforms, and water are just some of the aid that will be distributed to these African children as AAPDEP and PBA forges ahead to deliver humanitarian assistance guided by African Internationalism.

Project Black Ankh continues its work to consolidate its forces and to further its reach into African communities for our collective protection and to ensure the safety and security of the most vulnerable of our Nation, our Children.

Donate for Operation: Sunrise at developmentforafrica.org/donate

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