Youth Reintegration in Post-Conflict Sierra Leone

Evarosa Holt-Rusmore : Interdisciplinary Field Studies, Global Poverty and Practice (minor)

Mentor: Professor Mariane Ferme, Anthropology

Throughout the Sierra Leone conflict, many girls and young women are abducted and sexually abused. The result of the abuse and suffering is often pregnancy. Especially after the end of civil war in 2002, young mothers who return to their communities confront social stigmatization. This has had marginalizing effects for both mothers and their children. Eva Holt-Rusmore's research will address the effects of community stigmatization on the children of young mothers. Ethnographic observation of these children's lives through participation in a Freetown school, as well as informal interviews with individuals and their mothers will provide insight into the construction of post-conflict community and peace reconciliation. Additionally, various development workers and field experts will be consulted in order to bridge information gaps between policy, academia and the reality of childhood in Sierra Leone.