Stop Genocide Now (SGN) seeks to change the way the world responds to genocide by putting a face to the numbers of dead, dying and displaced. SGN is a grassroots community dedicated to working to protect populations in grave danger of violence, death and displacement resulting from genocide. Through active education, advocacy and policy change SGN resolves to change the way the world responds to genocide. SGN is currently focused on creating awareness and action to stop the genocide in Darfur and deal appropriately with its aftermath. All of our projects focus on and utilize the strength and power in grassroots connectivity.
- Active Education: To educate the public about genocide through innovative, interactive events and media designed to bring them closer to crimes being committed as well as help them realize their own power to stop those crimes.
- Advocacy: To support and guide citizens toward small, practical action that results in large, seemingly impracticable change.
- Use of innovative technology and Web 2.0 creates a new global community
- Emphasize interactive education and personal relationships to empower citizens to take action
- Provide and support tools and actions for grassroots advocacy that creates policy change
- Facilitate avenues for the voice of the displaced to reach the world
Stop Genocide Now is a global community of dedicated individuals who share the common goal of protecting populations threatened by genocide.
Stop Genocide Now consists mostly of volunteers. We came together as individuals who care about the world to change the way the we respond to genocide, and to the atrocities experienced by our friends in the camps. We are just like you: parents, sisters, brothers, full-time employees, techies and non-techies alike who believe that our voices can stir political will to take action. Join us, we are all on the same team.
In 2009, i-ACT, our project dedicated to the voice of the survivors, incorporated as a 501(c)3. Your financial support to i-ACT helps keep our projects going. There are only two paid team members. We are thankful to all our volunteers and partners that help make our work possible.
In recognition of the vast number of effective anti-genocide organizations already in existence, we wanted SGN to exist only to serve these groups and citizens by acting as their tool to connect victims to activists, activists to activists and organizations to organizations. We are proud to make our work available to all.
Our pioneering campaigns aim to break the silence surrounding the crime and pave the way for a new age that lives up to the refrain, “never again.” We believe in the importance of enabling interaction between supporters and genocide victims. All our creative campaigns are uniquely interactive and educational.
We strive to show the world that there is no wall between victims and activists. We show how every person, no matter their background, can stop genocide.
* All our creative work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution. Such works may be distributed freely and used for any purpose, provided StopGenocideNow.org is attributed.
- Gabriel Stauring is Co-founder and Director of StopGenocideNow.org. He has worked as a Family Consultant, providing in-home therapy for abused children and their families. He graduated from California State University at Dominguez Hills with a major in Behavioral Science. Gabriel became involved in the Darfur Genocide cause out of a sense of personal responsibility. He believes in the power of community and compassion, combined with personal empowerment, to bring about meaningful, positive change. Gabriel lives in Hermosa Beach, CA with his two children. Some of the campaigns initiated and/or led by Gabriel include the 100-Day Fast for Darfur, 100,000 postcards to legislators, Darfur Freedom Summer Vigils, Camp Darfur, Darfur Fast for Life, and i-ACT, Sudan Sham Elections, and This is Darfur among many other grassroots actions and presentations. He has visited the refugee camps on the Chad-Darfur border ten times.
- Katie-Jay Scott is a community organizer who has worked with NGOs and grassroots communities abroad and across the United States. She graduated from Portland State University (OR) with a BA in Sociology and a focus on Community Development. KTJ learned of the genocide in Darfur in April 2005 through the American Jewish World Service and co-founded the Portland Coalition for Genocide Awareness with other grassroots activists in November 2005. She joined the SGN team in June 2007. She has visited the Chad-Darfur border region six times and coordinated several SGN campaigns and i-ACT partnerships. She currently lives in Hermosa Beach, CA and works to bring the voices of refugees to the world conscience. Her motto is: Activate. Educate. Empower.
- Stacey Martino is from Philadelphia and currently resides in LA. She is a proud member of the SGN team who stands in awe of those she works with on the team. She is a partner Whole World Baby, a business dedicated to creating a world that works for all children and currently in post production for a documentary called The Gift of Peace about the efforts to establish a US Department of Peace and Nonviolence. Stacey tours a true story solo performance about homelessness and is preparing her next show, Refuge about upstanders in the face of genocide to benefit the work of Stop Genocide Now. Stacey’s'work includes writing, performing and teaching but her most important job is being a mother to her daughter, Ava Francisca Rivera who inspires her to never forget the children of Darfur.
- James Thacher is a graphic and web designer living in Brooklyn. He helps SGN and its various affiliates develop and strengthen their message through multimedia and interactive projects. He is also a video and media artist.
- Carolyn Au grew up in Malaysia and now works in the Bay Area. She graduated from Carnegie Mellon with a degree in Computer Science. Carolyn works hard on creating an interactive website that invites users to participate in building community with refugees and displaced persons still in danger of violence.
- Yuen-Lin Tan joined the i-ACT team in 2005, answering founder Gabriel Stauring’s call for assistance with the technological aspects of the first i-ACT mission to Chad. Since then, he has continued to support the team on technical and non-technical issues. Yuen-Lin has made two trips to Chad, in 2007 and 2009. Spending time in person with the refugees from Darfur, these trips moved him immensely and deepened his commitment to helping them. Since 2007, Yuen-Lin has been developing Commkit, a system that will allow refugees based in Chad to communicate directly with others around the world. On World Refugee Day 2009, Yuen-Lin, the i-ACT team and partner organizations UNHCR and VSee connected audiences around the world with the refugees in Chad through an interactive live webcast. Yuen-Lin believes that many of the world’s problems stem from a lack of understanding and friendship between people, and that i-ACT is a powerful agent of change in this regard. He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University. He grew up in Malaysia, and is currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
- Lexi Stauring It was not too long ago that I found myself enjoying my final days of residency in Hawaii. I run in and out of the shade of tall palm trees, skipping along hot, black volcanic rock ignited by the heat of the sun, a sun shared by some many worldwide. My thoughts dangle between Hawaii and my future, and I am not yet thinking of the refugees who feel the same heat of the sun on the other side of the world. Inside, my Apple lights up. My first stop is facebook to notify friends and family of my soon return to Los Angeles. Paging down the list of friends, I come across my uncle, Gabe. As I read his page, surrounded by the slow Hawaiian life, I feel a sudden change in emotion from excitement to pure remorse. What I see is only a small sample of all the progress that SGN had made since I last tuned in. What I feel is regret for being absent from it all; for living only in my moments and being so caught up in my own life. I am fresh out of High School and around the same age as many of the students SGN works with. Like many of my peers, I am having a harder time discovering my niche in the world then I ever imagined. Since my arrival here, I feel most content when I’m helping with SGN projects and campaigns. Impatient excitement grows as each new project moves from idea to effective action. Now, I not only share the same sun with our Darfur friends, but I share my life with them as a member of the SGN team.
- Cory Preston graduated from the University of Idaho, where he studied Graphic and Interface Design. He hopes to put what he’s learned here to good use helping people in anyway possible. Cory learned about the genocide in Darfur when Stop Genocide Now came to his school in 2007 and has been actively involved in working towards a safe Darfur ever since.
- Eric Angel is a software engineer that holds a B.S. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Davis. His M.S. thesis involved research in human perception of spatial sound and hands-on work with audio recording systems. In college he also studied image processing, and after graduating he was a Lecturer for an upper-division Electrical Engineering class at U.C.Davis. For the past 6 years he has lived and worked in Los Angeles. In June of 2009 he traveled as a member of the i-ACT team to the refugee camps for Darfuris in Chad. He ran the on-site technical operations for several live video conferences from within a refugee camp on the trip. This included a live link with a UNHCR World Refugee Day event for VIP’s in Washington D.C. and a 5 hour long live video feed that was viewed by people from around the world on a UNHCR website as it was happening. Eric also has experience with web design, audio processing, and video editing in Final Cut. Eric works with SGN because he deeply believes that technology has the ability to create links between people from different communities and cultures to solve some of the world’s worst human rights violations.
- Ian Harrington joined the i-ACT field team for World Refugee Day events and brings his creative video editing to the team. He edits videos that bring together pop culture and the voice of the Darfur refugee to inspire and empower citizens to act.
- Aaron Frank is a freshman at Syracuse University studying TV, Radio, and Film. He has filmed numerous student projects and several “professional” productions over the past four years. It is his main goal to make an impact through journalism and photography, and hopes to edit and film projects with Stop Genocide Now in the future to make this a reality. He is also an attendant for the Syracuse University Ambulance Dept. and will be taking classes this year to be certified as an EMT-Basic Life Support. Aaron hopes this training and mindset will be beneficial to projects he works on throughout his career. This is the start of a wonderful adventure.
- Niny Khor grew up in Indonesia and Malaysia, went to Mount Holyoke College, and currently loving the Bay area as a graduate student in economics. She’s interested in economic development, sustainable social entreprenerships, engaged Buddhism, rethinking non-profits as non-loss organizations, ways to foster a stronger civil society/democracy, peace efforts and other kinds of uplift patterns (gentle social revolutions). After a trip to Cambodia last summer, she was horrified to find out that the world is again standing silent while another genocide is happening.
- Rachel Veerman is an active member of StopGenocideNow.org. Her main focus is to teach others that by taking action, one individual can make a difference. Rachel has over 20 years of administrative background and is enthusiastic to share her knowledge to help SGN.org be successful in all their endeavors. Currently she works at the UCLA School of Public Health as a Sr. Public Administrative Analyst.
- Consuelo Stauring (Connie to friends and family) is Gabriel’s sister and fellow activist. She is self-employed in the jewelry business, living approximately half of the year in Monterrey, Mexico. She cares deeply about the plight of the native populations in Mexico and is personally involved in supporting those communities. She has worked in Mexico and the US on creating awareness and action for Darfur.
- Lara Markarian “Growing up in an Armenian community that has endured many years of pain and internal suffering because of a ruthless genocide has left a lasting impact on me and inspired me to work in the field of social justice. I firmly believe that current genocides are a product of past genocides because when a group of perpetrators is allowed to remain unaccountable and justice is not served, the precedence is set for further malicious action. StopGenocideNow.org works to educate the masses and put pressure on the government to keep promises that it has previously made- two important steps in the process to ensure that genocides do not remain a recurring theme in our world. I personally decided to join the SGN team and promote its mission because I grew frustrated with hearing the phrase “never again” and then learning about the hundreds and thousands of people being murdered in Sudan. The violence must stop now; no more broken promises. SGN has made it possible for me, a 19-year-old college student, to have an impact on the global fight against genocide. It is unbelievable that the organization is entirely run by simple people who have dedicated their lives to call for justice and to do whatever they can, no matter how small it may be, to make the voices of the silenced heard. Just in the past few weeks, by hearing the stories of the refugee camps and looking through the pictures of the Sudanese children who continue to smile even through these tough times, I have been greatly inspired and cannot wait to continue working with the SGN team!”
- Ali Khalil joined the i-ACT team in 2005, working as a translator and guide during i-ACT Expeditions 1-3. Since, he has worked to build community and support for team and organization. He is Chadian and holds a diploma in Computer Science. He has two years of work experience with humanitarian services especially in the Darfuri refugee camps in eastern Chad.
i-ACT Board Members include: Gabriel Stauring, Katie-Jay Scott, Yuen-Lin Tan, Eric Angel, and Stacey Martino.
- Chris Bessenecker is an international public health and development specialist. Over the last seventeen years his work has taken him to 13 countries around the world helping to address some of the most pressing problems faced by the global poor. He currently resides in San Diego, California. Mr. Bessenecker has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Sociology and a Masters in Public Health.
- Milton Chen has two years work experience with VSee Lab at Stanford University, serving as Chief Technology Officer and five years with Intel serving as Research Scientist. He has deployed videoconferencing systems in countries ranging from Iceland, Iraq, Afghanistan, to Africa. Milton has a PhD in videoconferencing software and visual communication psychology.
- James Davis is a professor of computer science at UC Santa Cruz. He has been acting as a technical advisor to VSeeLab for the past two years.
- Michael Miller has over a decade of experience in the technology industry. In addition to being a software engineer, he is currently studying History at the University of San Diego. The intersection of technology and the humanities is of particular interest, and he is working with StopGenocideNow.org and the i-ACT Campaign to bring international attention to the genocide in Darfur.
- Thomas Starko is Director and Principal of VISTAR LLC. VISTAR provides business advisory services with a focus on strategic change in the areas of strategy planning and implementation, succession, governance, organization development, and merger and acquisition integration. VISTAR and their associates have successfully created value for companies in the manufacturing, retail service, and technology industries in the U.S. and in Canada. In addition to his shareholdings in VISTAR LLC, Mr. Starko is a shareholder in PIXIT LLC, DHV Advisors and VISTAR Property Development. His wealth of experience, developed through years of owning and operating seven businesses, allows Tom to offer refreshing and practical advice to other growth-oriented organizations. He is a regular presenter to business forums, professional associations and conferences. Mr. Starko’s distinctive executive competencies include strategy development and implementation, business growth management, domestic and international marketing and specifically the protective apparel industry. Mr. Starko successfully completed the sale of one of his companies, Bulwark Protective Apparel Inc. to a Fortune 150 company in 1996. Bulwark was a start-up flame resistant apparel manufacturing business that, within six years, became one of North America’s largest protective apparel companies. It is still widely regarded as one of the most successful venture capital investments in Canada. Mr. Starko serves on several corporate and charitable boards, has been active in Canadian politics, founded the Canadian Coats for Kids Charity in Canada and is active in Junior Achievement, hospice, school mentorship programs, AIDS LA and Make A Wish Foundation.
- Paula Tavrow, Ph.D., is Director of UCLA’s Bixby Program in Population and Reproductive Health and Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at UCLA’s School of Public Health. She has a longstanding interest in sub-Saharan African health issues. She has worked in about 10 African countries since 1984, mostly in East and Southern Africa. Currently, she is doing research on AIDS prevention activities among adolescents in rural West Kenya. She is extremely troubled by the situation in Darfur and feels strongly that the international community is not doing enough to protect vulnerable citizens there. In general, she is concerned that the current administration’s policies are hindering health and development in Africa.
- Joanne Leslie is a deacon at Holy Faith Episcopal Church in Inglewood, and recently retired from the faculty of the Department of Community Health Sciences at the UCLA School of Public Health. She has a doctorate in international health from Johns Hopkins and a Certificate in Theological Studies from The Church Divinity School of the Pacific. She was a Co-Founder and one of the first Directors of the Pacific Institute for Women’s Health in Los Angeles. For the past two years she has been co-chair of the Peace and Justice Commission of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles. Joanne spent almost twenty years doing public health research and education in rural parts of Africa, where she developed a deep love and admiration for the resiliency of African people, especially African women. More recently, drawing upon her considerable international and domestic public health experience and the urban diversity of Los Angeles, she has developed an active local program of faith based education, promotion and advocacy around health, nutrition and fitness.
- Javier Stauring is Co-Director of the Office of Restorative Justice for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles . Javier began his ministry as a volunteer at Central Juvenile Hall over 14 years ago. After 5 years as a volunteer, Javier was offered the position of full-time Chaplain. Since 1996 he has overseen the largest Catholic Detention Ministry volunteer program in the nation. As Co-Director of the Office of Restorative Justice, Javier oversees four programs. These include Ministry to the Incarcerated, Ministry to Victims of Crime, Ministry to Families of the Incarcerated, and the Resettlement Program. Javier is also the Policy Director for Faith Communities for Families and Children (FCFC). FCFC is an interfaith coalition of over 70 faith-based groups in Los Angeles County . The goal of the coalition is to provide community-based support for youth and families involved in the foster care and juvenile justice systems. In 2003, Javier was one of three people worldwide, honored by Human Rights Watch for his advocacy work on behalf of incarcerated youth. Javier is committed to the radical transformation of the Juvenile Justice System. He believes in the principles of Restorative Justice which calls for reconciliation and healing of victims, offenders and communities.
- David E. Veerman is an active member of Stop Genocide Now. He is the official photographer in Los Angeles. His main focus is to reach out to high school students and teach youth to be upstanders by saying “Never Again” to genocide.