I have continued to burden myself with thoughts about the future and hope of the African Child. The more I think, the more I see huge hope for the future. Yet when I consider the enormity of the challenges confronting the African child and the hypocrisy of the primary and secondary caregivers, the huge hope I see seems to be nothing but blind optimism, borne out of my burning desire for a better life for the African child. Yet, I know that there is not hopeless situation anywhere, only hopeless people, according to Claire Boothe.
Having been between the two worlds of thoughts in my mind, I find the thought of huge hope gaining more grounds than that of despondency. And I have come to the irresistible conclusion that hope conceived and concealed is hope deferred, but hope shared, gradually develops a life of its own and finds wings to soar beyond the taming machinations of the enemies. Silence in the face of moral crisis is very powerful. It is only that such power is never on the side of the oppressed but the oppressor. I am therefore here today, in hope against hope to plead a cause, I live to plead, the noble cause of the Nigerian child. I desire that you catch the fire as you read and you do not only catch the fire, you become a touch, which passes on the beam of hope.
I found this title apt today to discuss one major issue as it relates to the African child. It is the impact of child abuse on the internal setting of the child and lack of social support services for the African child in his own country. Who is an internally displaced person? An internally displaced person (IDP) is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country’s borders. Many factors may be responsible for people being internally displaced, ranging from civil war, terrorist attacks, natural disasters etc. Though these persons are within the four walls of their nations, they are displaced and dislocated. They live as refugees in their own country. In fact they bear same characteristics as refugees.
Today I find a parallel between Internally Displaced People and their many sufferings and the suffering of children, who live within their own homes but yet suffer untold abuses. They live like strangers (refugees) in their own homes. They suffer from what I call siege mentality. Though, they are at home in the midst of their family members, who are supposed to be friends, their small minds have been so warred that they believe with their conscious and sub-conscious that they are in the midst of enemies. The number one symptom of siege mentality is fear. From fear paranoia sets in and puts the child on the edge. He/she seeks nothing but the day of emancipation at this point.
I also find another sad but interesting parallel, an abused child is Internally Displaced, that is, his/her mind and internal workings are damaged. His/her psyche is badly wounded. He/she is at his/her best a shadow of his/her true potentials invested by God before the foundation of the world. I submit that abuse changes everything about the child. It dehumanizes, it subjugates, and it destroys the whole essence of a person’s existence, having forcefully taken away the person’s dignity of human person.
To be Internally Displaced is to suffer abuses in the places that are supposed to be the safest for you. It is also for those who are supposed to be your caregiver to strip you of all the internal fiber of dignity installed into you by your Creator.
This discussion continues tomorrow by the grace of God. I charge you today to Think the CHILD…Think TODAY…Think the FUTURE…