day 8 from stacey

Friends,

Today we left the camp we had been at for three days and travelled to a new camp.In case you are wondering why we never name the camps we visit, it is a precaution we take to safe guard ourselves and the refugees who so bravely tell their stories. So, today we went to “new camp” and began the day at school again! This time we brought letters, drawings and videotaped messages from a classroom of America children to a classroom of Darfurian children. It was an amazing experience to see these young ones watch their new friends in the States with such a mix of excitement, curiosity and surprise. Each face reacted so uniquely as they sat staring at the computer screen. From America With Love was my first contribution to Gabriel’s work and this version he had collected with the teachers in Redding, CA was just awe inspiring! I NEVER dreamt that I would be here with him to see the immediate reactions to these messages of love and solidarity. It was one of the most fulfilling days of my life and such a joy to see Gabriel’s joy in sharing this with the children. I could so clearly see his love of children. The teacher had a similar love of children and I don’t think he stopped smiling the whole time we were there. He said that he would rather be happy than sad or angry, that it was the ONLY way for him. Obviously he has channeled all of his feelings about what is happening in Darfur into the education and concern for these children. The children seemed to be in better health at this camp even though it is one of the largest camps. The children also seemed to have less of a need for physical contact or to be as close as possible for as long as possible then the children at the previous camp. It had been so beautiful to see this swarm of innocent and loving faces at the last camp but it left me feeling that there was a desperate need to fill up on all the hope they could get when visitors arrived. As if the latest visitors were their last chance to get word back to the world
that they still needed help. I guess that is what happens after three years. Today, there was less wrapping of little bodies around ours but there was still the never ending pleas for books. Some older children, around 11, showed us drawings they had made in their notebooks. So many contained planes dropping bombs,the Janjaweed and guns. It was extremely painful to realize that this was their collective life and memory. That this is what their creative time produced. Most of them were not yet twelve years old. I felt so filled with anger, which is not what usually occurs when I feel overwhelmed by the situation in Darfur.Despair I’ve dealt with but this kind of anger was new for me. I tried to be like the teacher who chose happiness in the face of anger and despair but it was too hard. I’d seen these type of drawings before but never had an actual child survivor hand it to me with eyes filled with equal parts hope and pain. Then, one little boy handed me a drawing of a phoenix in flames rising from a pile of ashes! His teacher translated the title…Transformation. And hope rises again.

I do have to get something off of my chest. There was an incident prior to the preceding events that probably set the mood for the entire day for me. When we arrived at school we were talking to some teachers about the school, their work and the students. Suddenly, a woman walked up to us with a very authortative stride and a thinly masked annoyance at our presence. She asked us who we were and what we were doing there. I found it strange that she didn’t introduce herself directly or offer a frame of reference for our meeting, especially because EVERYONE here takes the time to shake hands and exchange greeting and names. This is true even in a room with twenty people ( I often think we could learn something about taking our time from this place and her people.) After several awkward minutes we learned that this woman runs a NGO which is in charge of overseeing education here. We were told to only talk to teachers and students approved by the school inspector. This on top of her constant pronouncement that the refugees needed to let go of ” the trauma” they’d experienced and commit to their life here. What life here?!?! I, too, believe that we cannot live in the past BUT the past is present and ongoing here! Three years is more time than some children with adequate support, resources and nourishment take to heal from their parents divorce and we are talking about watching your village be destroyed while your family and friends are murdered in front of your young eyes. I understand that this woman is working here and probably doing many good things and knows a lot more than I do about the day to day operations of overseeing education in a refugee camp but the tone of the conversation had this subtle sense of colonialism as if different standards applied to different people. I can’t imagine telling her to ” get over the trauma and commit to life here.” if this happened in Britain and her family was murdered, terrorized, raped, burned and then relocated to some place
they’d never been with thousands of others in cramped quarters, small quantities of unfamiliar food, no contact with family members back home and a host country that was overwhelmed itself. I felt like saying many things to her but knew I couldn’t because we needed her approval to stay and show the children the video messages. I felt like I was sixteen again standing in that schoolyard, holding the tongue which so often got me in trouble. This however, is not any ordinary schoolyard , my anger was that of a grown woman not a teenage girl and holding my tongue felt wrong. Perhaps seeing all of this every day and editing it with Gabriel every night is unleashing an anger I didn’t realize was under the sadness. I keep thinking, though, that for me it has been only five days in the camps, for the people of Darfur it is going on four YEARS! This leads me to the boy of 18 that we met as we were leaving today. His entire being rang of strength, determination and frankly anger. I understood his strength, it came from witnessing the murder of his entire family by the age of 15 and walking into this camp alone. I understood his determination, it came from his commitment to educate himself so he could walk out of this camp and into a better life. Most of all, I understood his anger. It came from being 18 years old, when boys first begin to feel capable of taking on the world, and feeling responsible to protect the women in his camp from being attacked as they gathered wood to cook. At 18 he should be falling in love, listening to music and continuing his education, not running after journalist when they arrive at his camp to make sure that the the world knows that his people want and need a UN Peacekeeping Forces to immediately protect them from the completion of this genocide.

I must remind myself to channel this anger into continuing action. To be led by a little boy’s drawing and example and ” transform” this anger into a pathway to peace. To sit in this anger is what has caused so many of the world’s violent situations and if I want peace in the world, I must strive to be peace. Today….it is a struggle indeed.

Salaam,
Stacey

Stacey’s replies to comments

Jake, Thanks for sending out the mass email! Looking forward to Camp
Darfur at Wildwood. Happy Holidays,
Stacey

Dear Pam O.
Hopefully we will collectively guide humanity toward a renewed spirit
of compassion. Thank you for your thoughts and words. Here is to work
guided and inspired by compassion! Peace, Stacey

You are so right Carla W., Gabriel is a wonderful inspiration! Thanks
for all the work on the postcards and being an early conscience for so
many of us who found out what was going on through your work. In
Solidarity, stacey

Tony G! I remember setting up my first Camp Darfur tent on the streets
of San Francisco with you and Valentino for the San Fran march and
rally….. hopefully the world is waking up to the Darfurians plight
with ALL the activism going on now….Stace

What you said is very true, Mimi! If we had gotten to the camps we
would have missed vital information about the situation here and in
the camps. It all works out for the highest good. Many Blessings,
stacey

Connie! My first introduction the Stauring family and the people of
Darfur…. you! Merry Christmas, Stace

Juan C. Luna, any friend of Julia Schuler’s is a friend of mine! Check
out my blog on 12/25 and see how her gifts touched the Sudanese women
and a littlw boy named, Abdul. Thanks for telling everyone you can so
we can stop this genocide! Peace, Stacey

Thanks, Evonne, your prayers worked! We got on the plane, a had safe
and smooth flight and are here with the beautiful of Sudan! Much light
to you, Stacey

Laura Haide, I was so happy that you found this online. It means that
word is getting out and the struggle of the Darfurian people is
becoming more known. I, too, feel changed by Africa and her
people.Thanks for following and let others know about it! Mungu
Akuburiki , Stacey

Pfelixm, so glad Rob let you know about the site! I hope that your
circle of family and friends who have done work in Africa get to watch
the journey. Say hello to everyone on Price Street. That street is
like one of the closest things I’ve found to a ” village” in LA and
many people I love live there. Say hello to Roberto! I look forward to
meeting you and hearing your thoughts about Darfur. peace, Stacey

Tasha,
If not for you, I never would have known about the first Camp Darfur
and I never would have been drawn to helping these beautiful people.
Thank you! Wishing you much peace and many blessings, Stacey

MB, much love right back at you! Hello to D. May we one day live in a
world where John Brown’s are not needed because we treat each other
with dignity and respect and awaken to the fact that we are all one.
Looking forward to sharing the amazing people I’ve met here with you
and D. in your backyard on Price St. Always, stace

Phyllis H., Yes, Dr. Brahma has kept his sense of humor in the face of
such suffering. He was a reminder that doing what we love in life, no
matter how difficult, brings great joy and the chance to meet people
who share a love of the world. I’ve always been drawn to and worked on
issues concerning homelessness and nonviolence. Darfur was something I
happened upon while I was busy planning a tour of a project called,
The Gift of Peace, to help establish a US Department of Peace and
Nonviolence. I was overwhelmed with planning that project but could
not ignore the anguished cries of a little boy in a film shown at the
first Camp Darfur. I was very busy, concerned about paying my bills
and it was not the time to take on anything else in my life but I
heard that little boy’s cries in my head all night. I went back to
Camp Darfur the next day and never left. I now realize, it was the
natural extension of the work I’d been doing with the homeless and the
DOP. The stakes were too high and the urgency too great to put it on
hold, An entire people and way of life was threatened. We just started
touring and developing Camp Darfur as a continuation of Gabriel’s work
by ourselves and hoping the money to grow and expand to other cities
would show up. Many generous people helped along the way and a
wonderful anonymous donor helped us to get here.In answer to your
other question, I am a writer/performer who also teaches acting, all
of which I approach with a focus on universal storytelling. I am very
interested in “functional art” that serves as a vehicle to share
personal & communal stories, facilitate healing and explore solutions
to both local and global conflicts. I’ve been VERY blessed this year
to teach in Germany which helped out financially. I taught at at a
theater that produces a brilliant play about a king who ONLY wanted to
focus on peace & art, not power and war. I also got to visit the
concentration camp at Dachau while there which deepened this work with
Stop Genocide Now. Somehow, with all the juggling and the feeling I’ve
taken on too much, I’m realizing it is all connected and feeding each
other and working out. I am focusing on a life that takes a creative
approach to being a small part of the network of “regular people”
working to create a world that works for everyone. The fact that I am
doing what I love surrounded by such compassionate/dedicated people is
a miracle to me. For that I count my blessings EVERYDAY. Gabriel
asked me to come because we’ve been working together on CD for the
last 8 months but also because he thought with my work background and
being a woman it might make it easier for the Darfurian women to tell
their stories. It went back to that first little boy’s cries for me
and I said yes. In Solidarity, stacey

Zahara, it’s not the same here without you! Hoping you are all having
a wonderful Christmas. I know, Gabriel misses you all so much and is
inspired by your love and support. Un Abrazo and Mucho Amor, stace

Merry Christmas, Mimi! Your dad is doing such good work here and will
be home soon! The children are beautiful just like you!!!!!! Stace

Leah, thank you for all your hard work in DC.Keep making noise! Shalom, Stacey

Mimi Schiff, thanks for your well wishes! The beauty is not diminished
by their circumstances which is a testament to the power of hope!
Stacey

Teresa, as you know i wasn’t here last year but I can tell just from
i-Act 1’s videos that conditions are worse. The clothing is hanging
barely on their little bodies and the adults feel helpless to feed and
clean and cloth their children. Gabriel says that the children are
even more in need of connecting to foreigners and there is more
desperation in the way they cling to you. It is overwhelming sometimes
because you feel that there is just not enough you can give to them.
Not enough love or hand holding or smiles or hope. You are very right,
though, about this being the best christmas ever. I wouldn’t want to
be anywhere else. Feliz Navidad! stace

Merry Christmas, Rachel and family! I know that Gabriel carries you
all along this i-Act. You are such a HUGE part of this journey and i
am proud to be a part of continuing the work you started. You are in
my prayers. Love, stace

Renee ( All Saints),
Hope your child’s Christmas program went well! You, Lorna, Lori,
Rector Bacon and the ENTIRE All Saints Family have been tireless and
committed supporters of the people of Darfur. I’d only come to service
there a couple of times a year ago. Yet, after my last night at Camp
Darfur one I drove straight to All Saints and met Lori. I sat and told
her how moved i was and that i wanted to help Gabriel create a tour of
CD. Lori said YES. She was our first yes and that yes led to this
world of ” yeses.” It’s all connected and EVERY action counts and
blossoms. Merry Christmas, Stacey

Tova,
Your dedicated work to The Gift of Peace Project has allowed me the
freedom to be here in this moment. You have gone above and beyond the
call of duty in the name of peace and nonviolence and I treasure you
for that. We WILL make this happen so that there are structures in
place within our government to advice and respond to atrocities like
Darfur. Without you and Adrianne I would have had to choose between
these two peace projects and I am so grateful to you both. I wish you
many Blessings, Stace

Gloria, you are and have been such an inspiration to me! I am honored
to live in a world where people like you share your courage and
spirit. My soul is energized by the people of Darfur and their
champions, like you, back home. I will carry your message & you have
lifted my spirits with that story. You have inspired so many with your
words, passion and dedication. May we all grow to be more like you.
Peace & Blessings, Stacey

Pamela,
The women and children are so beautiful, I agree. I am glad the world
feels a little closer. Your comments do the same for us when we are
out here! Stacey

Terry Mason,
So grateful for your efforts with The Gift of Peace project! Gabriel
sent Tova an email with our tech contact’s info. She’ll forward to you
so you can use it as you see fit. Look at Day 5 where all the kids
chant” peace’. Think it may say it all. You are an a gift to the DOP
and the world of nonviolent conflict resolution! See you at the
conference in Feb after the GOP tour! Peace, stacey

Jules ( julia schuller), cannot begin to tell you what your bracelets
mean to the women here. Look at day 5 blog for a christmas eve miracle
involving the first bracelet. Gave all the women in Day 6 one and took
photos of them wearing them for you. Your work is so generous and they
are all so unique, just like the women. You are always in my heart and
prayers. I am so grateful to travel this road of life with you. I know
there is so much more to come as we both grow and unfold. Hugs to
Steve, stacey PS- the women in day six reminded me of you, Bonnie, Q,
Mia and I sitting around the table together. it’s so universal….this
sisterhood thing!

Mama, So good to talk briefly on Christmas! I am so proud of you for
all you’ve done to teach me about compassion! You are an example that
has guided my life and now you continue to lead by reaching out to so
many locally about Darfur. I love you with all of my heart! Please hug
Chris and Dad and send my love. Missed Christmas breakfast but glad I
didn’t have to see the smelts! Realize how hard it must be for the
refugees to eat the same food every day for THREE YEARS! I’m so sick
of cans of tuna and breakfast bars after a WEEK. Their food is not
even what they are used to eating. It must be so difficult, so I am
lucky to have food I am used to eating. Don’t worry about us, so many
are praying that we MUST be safe. The after dark drive was
unavoidable and we are aware of the dangers. We both realize that we
must be careful to take care to protect ourselves and our equipment in
order to tell this story. Can’t wait to see you in Feb at the DOP
conference. Hope you haven’t booked a ticket for LA because we
changed the LA Gift of Peace date to late Feb after the tour. I
couldn’t pull it all together with so little internet & phone access
from Germany and Africa. I trust, though, that like this trip it will
all happen in Divine Time.
I LOVE YOU!!!!!! Charlie

Thank you, Lisa Goldner, for your prayers and encouragement. I am
wishing you and your family a joy filled and blessed holiday season!
The people of Darfur are fortunate to have families like yours caring
and calling the world to protect them. Peace, Stacey

Teresa,
I think it is so beautiful that your family and mine are connecting
through this site. It is a reminder that we are all family and the
world is smaller than we sometimes think. To see the families here is
so inspiring, it makes me appreciate my own family even more. I’ve
rememebered on this trip that it is the simple things in life that
mean everything. Families sitting and laughing and sharing together.
Let’s continue to work towards a world that provides those moments for
every family and immediately for the Darfurian people in their
homeland. Merry Christmas to you and ALL the Staurings, Stace

B and Sarah, It is because of your children ( I can hardly believe I
can say ” your children” to either of you!) that I am here. We must
make the world we leave them more humane and compassionate. You are
both such wonderful mothers ( like so many I’ve met here) and I keep
thinking about what it would be like if you and Max and Gabriel were
in the camps just by virtue of where you were born. It really reminds
me how blessed we are and how much harder we must work to create a
better world for ALL children.I love all three of you and tell the
boys their auntie sends kisses from Africa! Stace

Connie, It was actually nice to get a gentle scolding from you about
driving after dark! Now we are officially family! As I told my mom, we
will be careful so that we can tell this story. I too remember my
little brother, who I love and would protect before almost anything,
playing joyfully as a kid. I remember that I would actually cry when
things were hard for him in any way. I couldn’t stand to see him in
pain or unhappy. I look at these big sisters with their baby brothers
on their back and wonder how they must feel when he gets sick or
hungry. I will look out for Gabriel in your absence and be the best
substitute sister I can be while he’s away from home. Love & Peace,
Stace

Tony from Amnesty, thanks for writing and watching. Did we meet at
first Camp Darfur? It was the last night and we all stood around the
bonfire? There was a Tony from Amnesty there that night. Anyway, I’m
so glad that you think many are watching from Amnesty International!
Hope your holidays are happy and that we, together, create a safe
Darfur. Peace, Stacey

Jules, I was blown away by that too. So universal in spirit. Yes,
Abdul and the bracelet…. amazing! Merry Christmas to you too! Love
you, Stace

Rachel, Merry Christmas and YES it is all about LOVE. These children
never let us forget that fact. Hugs, stace

Mimi Schiff, Thank you for the holiday wishes. Hope you and yours had
a wonderful time. The world is lucky to have people like you that care
so much! Yes, the conditions are frightening, especially for the
children. Gabriel sees a marked difference and time will only make
matters worse. We must really put the pressure on now. Peace,h Stacey

Phyllis H, hope your family holiday time was warm and cheery! You are
so right about all we take for granted.I’ve learned so much here about
taking time as a precious gift. The three years the refugees have been
here, is time where we have all experience so much life and travel.
The way people here take the time to shake the hand of every person in
a room. There is a reverence for time that is beautiful and has
changed me already. The actions you are taking will make a difference
and inspire others to action as well. I’ll say hello to everyone for
you also! Salaam, Stacey

Hi, Missy. I understand your anguish about the children and am so glad
that their laughter lifted your spirits. We are and will continue to
convey the love and dedication of so many back home. Much Peace,
Stacey

Hello, Lisa Goldner and family! Thank you for your dedication to the
people of Darfur and direct action! If we make our will known, our
leaders will have a difficult time ignoring the situation and the
demands of their constituents who respect and cherish humanity. Your
words of encouragement are uplifting to me and I am grateful. Salaam,
Stacey

Mama, Hi! Glad you are so touched and inspired to more action! Yes,
what a beautiful people…. Don’t know why 12/27 is not up yet, we
sent the video after we finished editing last night. Maybe you checked
too early as our tech team is in San Fran ( time difference) We
thought that too, about the “overcrowded” classrooms. It really is the
triumph of education I thought a lot about your ” tough broads” too
during the time with the women… I Love you and will try to call
soon. ALWAYS, Charlie

Kelly Landaverde, I think he you are right about Gabriel’s reward. I
get to see a large part of that reward when I see the support of his
family back home and the love from the people here! Peace,. stacey

Meron,
Your description of you and the other women gathering together in the
tent at Camp Darfur for comfort was another reminder of how universal
the human/female bond is. I also cannot imagine what it must be like
to lose someone you love in an instant and then lose your homeland and
entire way of life. May the people of Darfur return safely home and
SOON! Stacey

Thanks, Connie. It is important that we bring our joy and hope to the
people here. Every time I want to break down i hold myself together
because they need our support and strength. I once heard someone say
that sympathy is seeing someone stuck in a ditch and you climb in
there with them and that compassion is when you give them a hand out
of the ditch. That is what we are trying to do…. Participate in
action. Love, stace

Mimi, hope you are well. Your dad is doing an amazing and dedicated
job here! Hope to see you as soon as we get back. Hugs to your Mom,
Irais and Gabo! xoxo, Stace

Teresa, thank you for leading the way with your actions! We’ve decided
to stop at the other camp and check on Mouna tommorow. We’ll let you
know. The time with the women was so personal and familiar. I’m glad
that they welcomed me into their ” circle of power and love.” Hugs,
stace

Diana, the actions you are taking are just what the people of Darfur
need us to do and if this work has motivated you to take action, it is
all worth it! Peace, stacey

Markus C., Great to hear from you! I will tell the people here that
you care. It is important to get The EU involved in the situation so
spread the word. Thank you for the well wishes and keep reading the
blogs if you cannot get the videos in germany! Much love, stacey (
hugs to all at the theater!)

Nina & Mark, so glad to hear from you! Hopefully one day soon the
world will be a better & safer place for all the little Graydons in
it! Thank you for your support of the Darfurian people and spread the
word in NY! I love you both, Stacey

Gabriel co-founded Stop Genocide Now in 2005, which gave birth to i-ACT in 2009.

He became involved in the situation in Darfur out of a sense of personal responsibility. He believes the power of community and compassion, combined with personal empowerment, can bring about meaningful change.

Comments

comments

Comments

16 Responses to “day 8 from stacey”
  1. tsai yi says:

    Stacey,

    Thank you for sharing with us your experience with the NGO lady. It’s an important reminder even amidst all the love that people around the world continue to show towards victims. The entire continent still suffers the consequences of colonialism – and indeed, the world leaders’ slow response to the genocide implicitly states that there are lives less important than others.

    When I was watching the interview of the 18 year-old boy, I was trying to read his expression. You’re totally right – it was anger. This is a face that is rarely portrayed – we are often only shown the sadness, the meek helplessness of victims, even when it should be obvious that there is deep anger somewhere. His face and his story lend strength to those who reiterate opposing genocide takes loud and bold voices to say what is true and what is right.

    tsai yi

  2. mark says:

    Stacey,

    Your videos and pictures tell the story. Hope your doing well. We all missed you at Christmas and Christmas Eve. Take care of yourself.
    Love – Sandy

    Mark wrote the other day but never saw anything posted. Did you get his message?

  3. Marilyn says:

    I completely understand your anger. Her remark reminded me of that unbelievable and callous remark made by Barbara Bush in the Astrodome, when she said that for many of those displaced by Katrina, they were actually better off. It’s easy to judge someone when we’re not in her shoes–and as you said, I’m sure the NGO worker does good work day to day in the camp–but there can be NO acceptance of what this is…because it shouldn’t be happening.

    I hope you’ll take this in the spirit it’s intended, because I’m enormously grateful for what you and Gabriel are doing. There’s a child in today’s video…around the 3-minute mark and again at 3:20…and I’m haunted by her face. Because although Gabriel’s intentions are so kind in sharing the messages from the kids in Redding, I couldn’t help but think looking at the look on that child’s face that having a video and written message from a classroom in California really does nothing to ease her pain. Still, I’m glad that you carried the messages to the kids in Darfur. But we (American government) must DO SOMETHING to END this. And to that end, THANK YOU for being there and doing what you can to spread awareness.

  4. Indrek says:

    I’m so moved by the work that you are doing Stacey and Gabriel. I’m praying that your work effects the much needed change and growth towards education, commerce and economic growth for these countries in Africa. I believe this growth will end the barbaric actions. I’m currently reading LEFT TO TELL, a book by a survivor of the Rwandan Holocaust. I’m heart broken that such burtality exists and I send you both so much Love and Light in your efforts to effect change. God Bless you.
    Blythe Metz

  5. Anonymous says:

    gabriel and stacy–thank you for all you are doing and sharing. we are learning so much from what you are doing every day. keep it up.

    ruth messinger

  6. Anonymous says:

    Dear Stacey,

    You are like a sponge soaking up all you’re witnessing so personally in Chad. It’s only natural for anger to well up at some point, and knowing you are effectively channeling that anger into something positive with the stories you’re transmitting should bring you some solace. You are touching these refugees with your humanity when they’ve been engulfed in inhuman conditions. Perhaps the NGO woman put up defensive mechanisms as a way of self-preservation in her world which has not seen much hope in years. I admire you for your self-control and diplomacy (especially with your sleep-deprivation)!

    Your interactions with the school children, like the student-exchange of drawings and stories, allow them to see that others, including other children, do care about them. This extends an element of hope.

    In interviewing these refugees like the 18-year-old boy, you help them have a voice, to share their fear, sadness, and anger, and this helps them cope till help arrives.

    Salaam,

    Lisa Goldner and family
    Texas

  7. Emily says:

    Thanks for keeping us posted on what is happening!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for your commitment, and for sharing the hard work with my brother. You are doing an excellent job, and hope you come back with all your goals achived.

    jc

  9. Anonymous says:

    Dear Stacey,

    The moments with the children, showing them the messages from the children in the US, exchanging letters and drawings, was brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. This is a model for the way education and interaction needs – and I mean needs – to occur in the this global community. And your work in these fourteen days proves that it is in fact a global community. There is no us and them. It is all us. Only. One. I admire you and Gabriel and this organization for the work you are doing. There is no us and them. Only us, together. Only.

    I can’t wait to talk to you upon your return. Keep up the excellent, beautiful, and eminently meaningful work.

    Yours in spirit,

    Darin

    Wow.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for everything you and Gabriel are doing! But please get some sleep :)
    I am amazed as I continue to read and see how important education is to the Darfurian people. And the boy today with such good English. Watching him tell his story really touched me. What a strength he has.
    Thanks for your message! I’m so glad that I was able to help bring a little joy with the bracelets. You are such an inspiration to me, and so many others. I thank God for you! I too am greatful to travel this path with you and am excited for the future.
    love, J

  11. Mom says:

    Hi Sweetheart…

    It took me forever to get on to
    leave a comment this time – hopefully because so many are sharing all you and Gabriel are doing! Funny, you mention your
    feeling of anger today (12/28)(which I think is only understand-
    able with all you are witnessing) –
    I’ve been picking an “angel” card
    for you each day and today’s (12/28) was “Humor” — so the
    cosmos is balancing out your feelings!! Was so glad to see your
    “From America With Love” in action!
    Once again, so taken by the rapt
    attention of these children.
    I could feel the anger of the 18
    year old man (for he’ll never be a
    boy again after what he’s seen) and
    frankly, I was glad, — glad that
    he’s angry.. glad that he still has
    the capacity to feel anything..glad
    that he hasn’t been so destroyed &
    defeated by “man’s inhumanity to
    man” that he can’t express what’s
    inside of him. My hope, is that
    someday that “anger” will be re-
    placed by a feeling of pride and
    strength – he will be the one to
    carry on his family’s name and
    heritage – he survived in the face
    of enormous odds and that is an
    act of courage beyond his years!

    Salaam…and love, Mom

  12. Susan says:

    Gabe & Stacy — I have been without internet connection for over a week so I’m playing a bit of catch up!
    Will post more as soon.

    Thank you for all that you are doing for the people of Chad/Darfur. many blessings! — Susan

  13. Anonymous says:

    I was thinking about how, in the classroom in Redding, the kids were so hyper and crazy and the room was so bright and shiny. and then in the school in the camp, they don’t have chairs, and how they’re so quiet. i’ve never seen so many kids being quiet at once before. i’d like to send over tons of notebooks and pencils.

    i hope one day that boy won’t be as angry. but then again, i can’t even imagine having my family gone like that.

    thanks for the footage!
    -diana

  14. Anonymous says:

    Hi Stacey and Gabriel,
    I share in your frustration for this woman’s comments. Granted, she is on the forefront and I am not. However, for her not to recognize the strength and resilience that these amazing Darfurians posess is beyond comprehension. One common thread I have seen in following your stories is the unbending faith of the people that you are meeting. God is great that they can still give thanks to Him after all they have experienced. And in the end, HE will see them through.
    You both are an inspiration for all!
    Peace and best wishes,
    Christine

  15. Anonymous says:

    Stacy

    Your presence over there is making such a difference to those refugees and the videos you send back are making such a difference here. Keep up the good work and be safe.

    Jacob

  16. ANQ says:

    i thought the idea oh having kids in the US write letters to the children in darfur was brilliant. so bravo on that.
    that 18 year old boy speaking about his families deaths, was real touching. thank you for it and everything else you have done.

    be safe and good luck

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