Every Feb 12 advocate groups all over the world speak out against the continued use of child soldiers in at least 14 countries. Young boys and girls are forced into combat, exploited for their labor, and subjected to unspeakable violence.
This public awareness campaign was promoted on the URI campus by the Center for Nonviolence & Peace Studies and organized by the Student Nonviolence Involvement Coalition (SNIC), the student nonviolence group. Booths were set up from at the Ram’s Den and at Hope Commons. 182 students stamped a red handprint with their signature and a message. Here are some of the poignant comments that were written:
“No child should know war,” “Childhood is sacred,” “Give every child a childhood with love,” “A kid should be a kid,” “Let children be children,” “They are just kids,” “We are all one,” “Give peace to all children,” “Our world needs peace,” “Bring light to the invisible children,” “Maintain your kindness.” Thanks to everyone who sends their messages to the United Nations.
All handprints were sent to the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who has pledged to “stamp out” the continued use of child soldiers.