Youth from Lira district are worried about high levels of domestic violence that have led to an increase in the number of children running fleeing their homes to the streets.
By Vivian Agaba
LIRA - Youth from Lira district are worried about high levels of domestic violence that have led to an increase in the number of children running fleeing their homes to the streets.
Andrew Ocen, 20, from Lira district says most parents in the district have resorted to drinking alcohol and upon returning home, begin mistreating children.
"Most parents in the district have become alcohol addicts. They go to bars as early as 7:00am and return late in the night. Upon their return, they start mistreating the children, beating them up and others get injured in the process and scatter to the streets," said Ocen.
He added: "The parents spend all the money on alcohol and are not bothered about sending children to school which explains why most children in our communities have dropped out of school."
Oscar Apeti, another youth from Lira district says there are also cases of divorce coming up in the district attributed to domestic violence.
"Domestic violence is so real in our district that some parents have divorced on account of it leaving children to be raised by single parents. While in some incidences of domestic violence, a parent kills another leaving the children orphans at a tender age," said Apeti.
The youth revealed this while attending the young Xaverian National Action campaign on stopping violence by the Catholic Church through Uganda Xaverian Movement at Sharing Youth Centre in Nsambya on Monday.
The two - day campaign that attracted over 500 Xaverians from five dioceses of Lira, Hoima, Mbarara, Kampala and Kiyinda - Mityana was organized by Uganda Xaverian Movement under the theme "Stopping Interpersonal Violence to enable children and youngsters live and grow in a healthy environment."
At the centre, Music, Dance and Drama competitions on non-violence between different dioceses were performed as a tool to enlighten the youth about the dangers of violence.
His Eminence, Emmanuel Cardinal Wamala who was guest of honour at the event asked the youth to learn and reflect on the dangers of any form of violence so as to resist from it.
"This is an occasion to learn, reflect and decide that you are born leaders to fight against violence not only between selves but any kind of violence so that you live in peaceful homes and communities," advised His Eminence.
He said it was time for the youth and therefore should choose to build peaceful homes and communities since they are the leaders and parents of the future generations, thus making the world a better place to live in.
The youth called upon their leaders to work with them so as to sensitise families and communities about the dangers of domestic violence so that can desist from it.
"Domestic violence destabilises peace in families, communities and country at large. It's us the youth and leaders to tell other people about it so that they use dialogue as a way of solving problems other than use of violence which worsens problems," said Victoria Apio, from Lira district.
Domestic violence breeding street children