In March, PAK47 founder, Marcus Young, traveled throughout Thailand visiting some of our project sites and children’s home. He had a chance to spend some time interviewing a number of former child soldiers and at-risk children. We’ve posted one of those interviews HERE.
Our goal with these interviews is to give you a glimpse into the lives of these children; their dreams, fears and the hard decisions they have to face on a daily basis.
Meet Satek, an at-risk child who decided to get an education so that he wouldn’t be put in the army:
What’s your name?
Where you from?
Achoo. (name changed)
How long were you at our home?
Lived there 7 years.
Your father was a soldier?
So both your parents are both still living?
Yes, mom and dad are still living.
A brother and sister.
Where do they live?
They live in Achoo (name changed)
So why did you come live with us?
My dad was getting old and didn’t want to soldier anymore so they took me to be a soldier as his replacement. I really didn’t want to be a soldier so they took my brother in my place. They sent me to your home to be a student and so I didn’t have to be a soldier.
What’s you favorite food?
I love to eat meat!
How’s your new location? (This is a safe house we moved some of the more at risk kids to.)
It’s good. Not bad, not outstanding, it’s good.
What’s your life dream?
I want to go tell people about Jesus, want to plant churches.
How was it at the children’s home?
Good food, good education, good houseparents.
No, but here (at the safe house) it’s a bit harder.
When the soldiers came barging into your home to conscript you, what was that like?
I wasn’t happy when I saw them. I told them, I wasn’t going to soldier.
What did they say?
You are going to replace your Father….but I wasn’t willing.
Did they take ahold of you and try to make you come?
Yes, they grabbed ahold of me like that (Marcus grabs Satek’s shoulder) and told me to come with them.
Were you scared?
No…didn’t know enough to worry yet.
Did they come and stand in front of the house and call you out?
They barged right into the house.
Really? Did they point at you and say you were going to the army?
Yes, and they took your brother then?
They took him.
And they agreed if you were in school you could stay out of the army?
What about the trouble we had at the home last year (2011) when the soldiers came to take kids. Did they talk to you?
No, but they did take some kids. It was so hard on them and most of them deserted the army. Some of them I never saw again but one of them is with us here because he still wants an education.
So he fled the army and came back to us.
Thanks for sharing Satek.