Children released from Armed Forces and groups -ESFGA (Enfants Sortis des Forces et Groupes Armés) – is a term used to describe children who have subsequently been freed from or left their military role, and are EAFGA’s that have been both verified and certified. These children have been guided towards the CTO were they are warmly welcomed (girls and boys are kept separate) and receive varied humanitarian assistance.
They benefit from a medical check and psychosocial care to help them through the trauma suffered. This is in addition to re-educating them at whatever level necessary, bearing in mind that some may never have gone to school. They may also enjoy guidance regarding their future: The children might be directed towards full or vocational education, as well as professional apprenticeships, their respective path will be chosen based on whatever is more appropriate. They will also be aided in their own personal development through specific projects with the help of our social workers.
Their stay lasts for approximately 3 months. This is the minimum time necessary in order to help the supervised transition from a militant to civilian and to reintegrate children within families. This time is also needed by BVES and his partners to perform family and community research and mediation in order to reunite and reintegrate children. An official certificate of discharge from military officer is also provided.
The main objectives of the CTO:
To ensure the physical and psychological rehabilitation of demobilised child soldiers
To facilitate reintegration into family and community
To protect the children against all forms of re-recruitment
In order to achieve this, an educational program is implemented day and night by social workers and policy makers involving many activities, both creative and recreational. The children participate in activities themed on HIV and AIDS, human rights, peaceful cohabitation, good values, development, prevention of reenlistment after being reintegrated into families and the community, etc.