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AlumNews: Talon Articles

Students involved with Invisible Children

Friday, September 14, 2007  
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By Sarah Gogarty

When three men decided to go to Sudan to find out what they could about the genocides going on, they found something they didn’t expect. After traveling to Uganda when they didn’t find anything in Sudan, these men discovered the Invisible Children.

Invisible Children is the name given to the children who have to walk out of town to stay safe at night.

These children walk all night looking for a safe place only to walk back to work the next morning. The creators made their documentary about these children and brought it back to the United States to inform everyone of the situation in Africa. They then got together a group of roadies to travel around the country and hold screenings of the video.

Megan Taylor, an Oklahoma Christian University student, was a high school senior when she decided to get involved. Like many others, she held a screening in Dallas to raise $500 for the fund.

The next year, while still having people tour the country and spread the word, Invisible Children planned the Global Night Commute. The Global Night Commute had thousands walk and sleep outside for one night to raise awareness about the war going on in Africa.

“We wrote letters to the US for them to lobby to get involved in the war in Uganda,” Taylor said.

The Ugandan government has tried to help protect the children against the rebel militia by giving them camps they can stay in. These camps are not up to living standards and the trip to reach them is long. Many die on the way. The people of Uganda have had two generations destroyed by alcoholism, sexual abuse, HIV/AIDS, inadequate sanitation and lack of education because of this war.

Northern Ugandans have been without homes for over 10 years. In order for Americans to understand, Invisible Children decided to organize another night event allowing them to experience displacement.

After school was out last year, Invisible Children held the Displace Me Night in 15 different cities here in the United States. Many participants in the Global Night Commute travel a long distance to be involved.

“We built houses out of cardboard boxes, and they [event organizers] passed out food to us like it would have been if we were in a camp,” Taylor said.

Invisible Children is getting the word out. Tuesday, Oklahoma Christian was involved in screening the most recent video, which was also shown on campus last year. One of the roadies, David Lewis, and his partners also added up-to-date information.

“We return in October to show an awesome new video about the displaced people in Northern Uganda and Bobby’s trip to live among them,” Lewis said.

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