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Kony 2012: Invisible Children And 7 Other Charities Fighting For Child Soldiers

The Huffington Post     First Posted: 03/ 8/2012 7:06 pm   Updated: 03/ 9/2012 11:21 am

The “Kony 2012” video campaign against Joseph Kony, the leader of Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army, was met with fiery reactions across the board after it exploded across social media platforms Wednesday.

The documentary's graphic portrayal of Ugandan children as soldiers became a viral sensation, racking up more than 38 million views on YouTube.

While the film has garnered a great deal of support for the cause, some suspicious viewers are taking a critical look at Invisible Children, the organization behind the documentary. Since the release of "Kony 2012", questions have been raised about the organization's spending practices, support for military action and failure to hold Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni accountable.

But what both supporters and dissenters can unequivocally agree on is that "Kony 2012" has opened the eyes and minds of millions who would not otherwise know the extent to which Kony tortures and trains children to kill.

Since before the film came out, several human rights organizations, including UNICEF, International Rescue Committee, Child Soldiers International and SOS Children's Villages have been working to rescue and rehabilitate child soldiers in Uganda. Whatever your opinion is on the viral Kony campaign, consider learning about -- and contributing to -- the nonprofits that continue to perform lifesaving work in Uganda.

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UNICEF partners with local Ugandan communities to provide them with the tools they need to protect, heal and empower former child soldiers. The organization works to take guns away from children and moves children away from living in barracks.

When it comes to reintegrating ex-soldiers into their communities, UNICEF gives local centers shelter materials, medical services, counseling and job-training support.

Get involved with UNICEF's child protection programs here.

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