The International Convention on the Rights of a Child (1989) recognized among other things that a child should grow up in a family environment, and in an atmosphere of happiness, love, and understanding. The study analyzes attitudes of Sierra Leone Street Children toward forgiving their wartime oppressors. Many atrocities were committed during the war from 1989-1999. It also contributes to the literature on the plight, adjustment, and psychological states of children after the war. Data were collected through review of related literature, a War Forgiveness Scale questionnaire, and comments on aspects of forgiveness. The research questions were embedded in a 20-item War Forgiveness Scale Questionnaire developed by the author. Three pertinent items dealing with forgiveness issues were analyzed together with associated comments collected from the participants: (1) What are the children’s’ attitudes toward forgiving those who abused them physically during the war? (2) What are the children’s attitudes toward forgiving those who sexually abused them during the war? (3) What are the children’s feelings on whether the people of Sierra Leone should give a blanket forgiveness to all those who committed acts of violence against citizens during the war?
|Keywords:||Street Children, War, Oppression, Forgiveness|
Professor, Curriculum and Instruction, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond, KY, USA
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