Their Struggle Continues… Ours Has Just Begun

Every so often when I am playing my iTunes on random, the i-ACT1 Day 21 soundtrack plays. It’s not the full video, just the beautiful sounds of the Darfuri people, and Chris and Gabriel laughing with them. I always, always cry when I hear, “Don’t just see in front of you. Turn back and see what is behind you, so maybe you can help the people behind you.”

I wonder what life the children in this video have now, five years later, still in the same camp. I wonder if all the mothers they met have built mud or straw homes to replace the tents. I wonder who is no longer with us because they didn’t have the right medical supplies or nutrition. I wonder when peace will come to their lives so they can return home. When will the children know life outside a refugee camp and in their village.

What we have learned from past genocides is that it doesn’t just effect the generation that was targeted, but all the generations thereafter. Armenians frequently say, “Genocide is in our blood,” and to this day we work with many young Armenians working for Darfur and to end genocide. I don’t think that Darfur will ever be the same, it has been altered forever.  I just hope that one day they will be able to prosper as a people once again. To live freely doing what they want to do – farming or teaching, or becoming leaders in their community. This particular video touches me on a very emotional level, but the background song gives me hope that one day, Sudanese everywhere will be free to live the life they choose.

Katie-Jay keeps i-ACT running on several levels. Much of her work entails coordinating partnerships with other grassroots organizations and implementing the campaigns developed by Gabriel and seeing through the details. She graduated from Portland State University with a BA in Sociology and a focus on Community Development. She has previously worked as a community organizer in Thailand, Guatemala, and with grassroots organizations across the United States.

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