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과거 소년병의 이야기 - Mayom Mabuong

2007.10.18

Asset ID : 130836-UNCF_7600_72369-n.MPG
* Trading guns for textbooks
Shoot Country: Sudan
* 01 Apr 2007


SOUNDBITE, MAYOM MABUONG, Former Child Soldier (English): “After I spent 21 days in secondary school I was taken out of the school and I joined the army.” As a child, Mayom Mabuoung was a soldier in Southern Sudan.

SOUNDBITE, MAYOM MABUONG, Former Child Soldier (English): “By that time I was 15 years old. I spent some years in the military. Until I was demobilized in 2001 by UNICEF.”

Like many other children, Mayom’s transition to civilian life in southern Sudan was not easy.

SOUNDBITE, MAYOM MABUONG (English): “In the military I am a free man. But then I was a bit worried to be re-unified with my parents, due to the pressure they put on me. And to get education in their hands, I feel happy. So my happiness becomes big and my worries is small. So I agree to join the school again.”

Mayom was like thousands of child soldiers who were demobilized after the peace agreement in 2005. They came to communities like Rumbek, whose overcrowded schools were in such poor condition rain leaked onto students, teachers and the books.

But that is changing.

UNICEF made it possible to build permanent structures at Deng Nhial. The construction project is part of the ‘Go to School’ initiative, the Government of Southern Sudan’s campaign to rebuild the education system and return 1.6 million children to the classroom by the end of 2007.

SOUNDBITE, ZAKARIA BOL GALLAB, Head Master of Deng Nhial Primary School: “There will be a better place for girls’ education. Because all those years the children learned under the tree, when the rain comes the children run away from the school because of rain. But now if they are going to have these class rooms they will enjoy education and they will benefit more from education, especially the girls.”

Today, at 24, Mayom Mabuong is a teacher at Deng Nhial School. To him, the new school represents more than a physical structure; it is a child-friendly, safe haven where child soldiers can become citizens.

SOUNDBITE, MAYOM MABUONG (English): I am a teacher. I was happy being in the school because it means you are building your future.


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