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    Learning More About South Sudan

    DAY 58

    Informing For Change

    Learning new things and shifting the way you understand and think about your world is some of the most important change that can happen. So, on Day 58, we wanted to provide supporters in Minnesota the opportunity to do the doable – and come educate themselves about the current crisis in South Sudan.

    About 50 people attended a briefing at ARC’s Headquarters on the humanitarian situation in South Sudan. ARC President Daniel Wordsworth talked about ARC’s work providing health care and protection services in South Sudan, as well as our efforts helping South Sudanese refugees in Uganda at Bidi Bidi refugee settlement. Daniel also set the scene a bit with a few sobering statistics on the crisis: more than 3.5 million South Sudanese have fled their homes in the last few years as a result of the conflict; 40% of people in South Sudan are currently in need of urgent food aid; and 100,000 people are in serious threat of starvation due to famine.

    But, as Daniel often repeats, ‘statistics are human beings with the tears dried off,’ and we were fortunate to have David Acuoth join us to give a firsthand perspective from South Sudan and tell us about the people he met.

    David was a lost boy – separated from his family during the Sudanese civil war and forced to flee to safety unaccompanied by an adult. He lived in a refugee camp for years with other children in his same situation before eventually being resettled to the United States in November of 2002. David currently works as a Congressional staffer for the Foreign Affairs committee. A few weeks ago, he returned to South Sudan (which gained independence from Sudan in 2011) for the first time since he fled as a child – he wanted to see what was happening for himself.

    I visited clinics and found that you could go to a hospital but they had no medicines,” said David. “At one clinic I visited there was a young boy with a very deep wound and they were using salt water to clean it. That’s all they could do. These health care workers have nothing to offer these people.”

    “I remember meeting an older gentleman. I went with money so I gave him a value of $20. He said, ‘No my son, I will not take the money.’ And I said ‘Why?’ He refused the money because there is nothing for him to buy. They have been cutoff by insecurity… people are deciding ‘how will I meet my fate? By bullet? Or by starvation.”

    David offered a call to action to everyone there at the briefing. “I hope for those of you who have been following this crisis to continue. Because it doesn’t help us to move from one crisis to another but rather to solve what we have now. All of us have voices and any of you can show up and talk to Senator Klobuchar tomorrow and deliver that message to her.”

    If you have a few minutes, help us keep change rolling. We recorded this briefing on South Sudan and it’s available to watch below. Please take a moment to hear from David, shift your understanding and continue making change today. [The video audio is muffled, but if you turn your speakers all the way up you should be able to hear]

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    Changemakers 365

    by Alight


    The world’s tough problems can seem insurmountable. So at Alight, while we tackle those big problems we also do what’s doable. Right then. And that’s what Changemakers 365 is all about. Learn more!


    Changemakers 365 members give either $30 per month or a one-time gift of $365 (it’s free for anyone who has ever lived in a refugee camp). Join us!

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