Many actually consider that Africa is a wilderness where there will never be peace. It is also deemed that Africa's children are doomed to live a pitiful existence on earth because it is their 'lot' in life. Up to half of the world's child soldiers are in Africa. Many of these children are abducted at ages as young as 10 or 11 years old, some even younger.
In his superb article 'A Human Rights Wish-list for 2013', Jack Healey encouraged us to chose our own wish-list. I have taken up that suggestion.
While my travels meant I'd heard of the Central African Republic - unlike many people in the West - and I knew of the huge problem of child soldiers in the region, it was truly eye-opening and enlightening to see the situation up close, particularly the brave work of the UNICEF workers risking their lives to negotiate their release. Thousands of children in the country, out of a population of only 5million, have been abducted, tricked or coerced into fighting.