Do you think you would feel safe walking to school by yourself every day on a conflict-stricken road? Well, most people wouldn’t.

To get our human rights met, such as the right to education, depends on the fact that we both are secure and feel secure in our everyday life. Exposed groups in our societies, like many youth groups, need special attention when it comes to protection during conflict and post-conflict scenarios. This is why the UN resolution 2250 requires governments and urges other stakeholders to assure the protection of civilians and ending impunity by bringing to justice to those who has committed crimes such as genocide and war crimes against young civilians. Efforts and actions for protection should also be provided towards to the most vulnerable groups  in our societies.

Protecting ourselves from violence by using violence is, however, a way to feed more violence. Despite this, many young women and men decide to join militias and take to arms in order to protect themselves from violence. Why, one would ask? Well, maybe because of the simple fact that we do not feel secure and resort to our last option – fighting fire with fire. Looking at this from a broader perspective, this might not be so surprising. Young people have often not been guaranteed protection in the same way as other more traditional groups and the protection provided has not always been based on the specific needs of young people. In order to guarantee the protection of young women and men, our specific needs must be taken in to consideration.

What do you need to feel secure and protected?