The Psychosocial and Political Dynamics of Children and Youth Entering and Exiting Armed Groups
Contribution to Book
Oxford University Press
Psychological Perspectives on Understanding and Addressing Violence Against Children
Original Item ID
In 2018, over 13,000 children were demobilized and reintegrated into society, even as thousands more were recruited for or participated in armed conflicts. The developmental trajectories and functioning of these children are integral to international efforts to reduce inequality; make communities inclusive, safe, and resilient; and promote peaceful and just societies. In turn, analyzing societal structures and influences is necessary to understanding their participation in armed conflict, as well as building effective international supports for their demobilization and integration. In this chapter, we discuss the definition of child and youth combatants and review the current literature on child and youth combatants’ motivations to join armed actors and the processes by which they reintegrate into society. The chapter closes with a review of practices aimed at supporting demobilized children and youth in Colombia as a case study for challenges to these efforts and linking them to peaceful, just, and sustainable societies.
Velez, Gabriel M. and Idrobo, Fabio, "The Psychosocial and Political Dynamics of Children and Youth Entering and Exiting Armed Groups" (2022). College of Education Faculty Research and Publications. 609.