Today (18 December) Minister of State for the UN, Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon met War Child Global Ambassador and actress Carey Mulligan to discuss galvanising the international community to support children affected by armed conflict around the world.
The meeting follows the launch of the Global Coalition for Reintegration, which aims to ensure children affected by war have access to high quality, long-term programmes addressing psychosocial, education and vocational needs. The UK is a strong supporter of the initiative.
Last year, thousands of children were released from armed or militant groups and over 12,000 received support from UNICEF and partners to reintegrate back into their communities. Despite this, there are still too many children in urgent need of support. The UK is the largest contributor to the UN’s work to support children in armed conflict, providing £800,000 over the last five years.
The UK have also agreed to match up to £500,000 that War Child raises for a new Aid Match appeal on education and psychosocial support for children in the Central African Republic.
Minister of State for the UN, Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon said:
We know that whole communities are affected by conflict, but it is children, young girls and women that are often the hardest hit.
I continue to make the case at the UN and with the international community that we must work together to ensure that children in conflict zones receive the support they need to overcome their traumatic past and become forces for peace within their communities.
This is a real and urgent problem, children affected by conflict are over twice as likely to be out of school. This problem needs international consensus to ensure that all children have the opportunity to access their full potential and stop the cycle of conflict.
War Child Ambassador Carey Mulligan said:
On behalf of War Child I’m really pleased to see Lord Ahmad’s commitment to addressing the challenges faced by children in conflict – and we look forward to working with him and the FCO to ensure that the rights of children in war are at the heart of the UK’s foreign policy agenda.
War Child is committed to listening to the experiences of children affected by conflict and providing long-term solutions and supporting them to overcome their experiences and look forward to a meaningful future. 2019 will be an important year with the Global Coalition for Reintegration bringing together the international community to ensure that all children released from armed groups receive the support they need - I’m excited by the role the UK government can play in that.
To have a lasting impact on the one in six children globally that live in conflict zones it’s crucial that the UK government galvanises support across the international community to ensure that every child affected by war has the opportunity to realise their potential.