Psychosocial Issues Associated with Childhood Engagement with Fighting Forces or Being a Child Soldier


Principal Investigator:
Theresa Betancourt, Assistant Professor of Child Health and Human Rights

Department of Global Health and Population/ Francois Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights

Dates of Research:
December 20, 2007 — February 15, 2008


The goal of this project is to prepare a report addressing what is known about existing research and service surrounding the topic of psychosocial issues associated with childhood engagement with fighting forces or being a child solider. This report will address five key points: 1.) What research exists on the psychological impact on children serving in armed conflict and the traumas often associated with it (such as abduction, potential sexual abuse, etc.); 2.) What programs or services are being conducted to address this impact; 3.) The evidence base documenting impact of these existing programs or services; 4.) An assessment of gaps or holes in existing research knowledge base about the impact on children of serving in armed conflict and associated issues; and 5.) An assessment of gaps or holes in the existing service delivery related to these problems.