My name is Arron*

..i’m a soldier child of Broa, a small city in the centre of Central African Republic.

I’m 15 years old and i lived for 2 years with one of the small armed group of rebels called “ex-seleka”.

I lost my mother and my brothers when we escaped from our village because it was been attacked and I hoped to find them following the rebels. But I was wrong. I realized that I had to do hard works, walking for days in the forest under the sun, carrying general’s corps and supplies for the soldiers.

Then, they gave me a rifle and I have had to shoot.

I will never forget the eyes of dead: they look at you with horror also after many hours they died. Their eyes remain wide open and we must continue to march and go beyond.

They were always in my mind, I dreamed about them, I could not sleep even if they gave me a sort of medicines and they made me smoke something very strong, because they said it was useful to be more strong and not to be afraid. But it didn’t work with me.

I decided, with others boys, to go out from the group and to return in a normal life. But we found ourself with anything.

Coopi’s operators took on responsibility of us and they found my father, in Bria. My father and my mother separated before war. I lived with her but I lost her. Now, my father got married again and he have had others children.

I spent some times in their house, but I didn’t feel well: my daddy is always away for travel work, and form me is not easy to stay alone with my stepmother. I’m not his son. I was always the last one to eat, they didn’t buy to me new clothes, neither slipper, and when I was ill, they didn’t bring me to the hospital.

Luckily, Coopi’s welfare workers arrived at home and they helped me. I have been hosted at the transit centre of Coopi here in Bria, where they gave me cures and clothes. I always eat a lot and now I fell good. Sometimes we do some meets with my father and my stepmother and the situation is better.

In this Centre, with others boys like me, I don’t feel different: we often speak with the welfare workers of our experiences and they help us to afford and go beyond our problems.

Nightmares are disappearing, during the night I can sleep! The fact I know that my friends live the same difficulties, made me feel less alone. We often play football (my favorite sport!). I would like to be like Messi, the football player of Barcelona!!!!!

I follow the course of literacy because I lost too much years of school, but I would like to become a mechanical, they signed me up for the training course. I always go there and i’am learning lots of things!

My mother will be proud of me and I can help her. The operators of International Red Cross are looking for my mother but last time I heard about her, through my uncle, she was very far from Bria and I don’t know where she is now. I always hope to find her.

Meanwhile, on Saturday and on Sunday I go my father’s home. I feel better with my step mother and others children: I eat and play with them. The operators told me that if they don’t find my mother I must stay with my father, but they will help me to introduce me better in my new family.

I hope others boys will stop to fight and will be help by Coopi, like me. I hope that wars and combats will end so we can start again to be “normal”, like all others children in the world.

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