Al-Raqqa – A child is a term given to human since his birth to pre-adulthood, and children are the most important group in society as their natural upbringing has a major impact on the future and present of the society.
There are several reasons of the problem of children dropping out of school to labor life, including the low cultural level of the family, the lack of school, poor educational system, poverty, war and crisis
A crisis that children are its victim
One of the most important and complex results of the Syrian crisis since its beginning in early 2011 until now is the damage to the childhood group that has been excluded by wars and battles and the change of regimes and administrations in different areas of the Syrian geography from living their normal lives in terms of education and playing. On the contrary, they were entered into the labor market and were carried the loads that are heavier regarding their age and abilities, so many doors of evil and corruption were opened.
They became fighters
The crisis not only dropped them out of schools and introduced them to the labor market, but also it exploited them by some armed organizations, and a prime example of this, the terrorist ISIS organization that was recruiting children and washing their minds, and it has formed for them a faction called “Caliphate Cubs”.
Works made them lose their childhood
As a result of the deteriorating economic conditions, the children of Raqqa have been forced to work in professions and crafts that are not suitable for their age or mental state and needed a strong physical, so the weak structure of the child’s body cannot bear it. For example, working in the moving and carrying goods, working in car maintenance and collecting iron from destroyed buildings, … etc.
Malik, 8 years old child who went from early morning to collect iron form destroyed buildings. He said,” I start collecting iron from destroyed building since early morning to support my family.”.
“My sisters and I are collecting plastic pieces from landfills to sell I order to provide clothes and food for us,” said Hind, 11-year-old girl.
Phenomenon Local combating
The Autonomous Administration along with its councils and committees and by several measures and decisions, is trying to stand against this phenomenon. The Organizations Office in Raqqa and according to its manager, Louay al-Issa, who said that they are working to prevent child labor and begging by providing rehabilitation centers, developing their ideas and integrating them into schools, and he also pointed out that they are directing organizations to target children who do not have a family breadwinner.
The Education Committee, for its part, has helped to highlight the phenomenon on several official and popular occasions, warning of its increase in the city, and urging parents to send their children to school which is the right place for children.
Through a spokeswoman of the School Administration in Raqqa, Amal al-Ali, appeals to humanitarian organizations and the international community to shoulder their responsibilities in supporting these children to help eradicate the phenomenon once and for all.
Al-Ali added by considering it a dangerous phenomenon that is a stigma on humanity
International combating of the phenomenon
In the International Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), adopted by the United Nations in 1989, it addressed the issue of protecting children from economic exploitation and setting a minimum working age.
In the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, adopted by the Un General Assembly in 1966, Article 10 of this Covenant contains the need to protect children from economic and social exploitation, prevent them from being employed in acts that harm their morals and their health. The signatories were obliged to set a working age so that children could not be employed.
UNICEF, for its part, said in several items that it should raise awareness and sound the alarm about the consequences of child labor and its impact on children’s physical, psychological and behavioral health.
In conclusion, we must all officially and popularly stand by all means and ways in the face of the spread of this phenomenon because it has negative effects on the present and future of society and the region, and to help children get their rights in surviving, growing, learning and living a decent life free from economic, social, military and intellectual exploitation.
SDF Media Center