Refugee Week Post No.5 This young man, my namesake, has experienced quite a winding journey in the last couple of years. But the latest picture sees him working as DJ Platonic in Juba, capital of South Sudan. Thanks for sponsoring him in the early days Form 9W at Great Sankey.
Refugee Week post No. 4. What a difference 12 years makes! One of our sponsored students has now reached half way through Senior 5 or Year 12. A big thank-you to past and present members of Great Sankey High School Science department for your continuing monthly support.
Will this hug mean anything? Riek Machar and Salvar Kiir met yesterday in Addis Ababa for the first time in 2 years. These two key leaders of South Sudan know they must be reconciled in order to bring an end to the devastating civil war which has soaked the region in blood and despair. “You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.” Matthew 5:9 (The Mesage translation). I for one am praying that this awkward hug comes to mean something profound.
This week is Refugee Week in the UK. So I thought I’d post a few updates. Firstly Gill and Kevin, two of our students who, sadly, are missing out on school in 2018 through lack of funds. We have 260 people who like our Facebook page, and 70 people who donate money regularly to AREP. If we could only mobilise more of our supporters to donate monthly, then young refugees like Gill and Kevin could return to get the education they need.
Empowerment: Esther now makes and sells childrens’ clothes using skills she gained through AREP sponsorship.
Increasingly within AREP, we are looking for effective ways for people to become self-supporting. Starting a small business making and selling clothes is one great way. Please get in touch if you would like to know more about Esther’s business. She is looking for investors!
In Uganda, January of each year sees the tense wait for exam results by those who took their key Senior 4 exams in November, equivalent to GCSEs in the UK.
We have two students undergoing this wait! Lovemore and Scovia, here pictured with the headteacher of Seeta High School: Lydia Lukwago Kagoya
The Eco Stove is a revolutionary product. It was invented in Uganda by Rose Twine and is manufactured there. It is already being deployed in some refugee camps. I met Rose this week in Kampala.
This model retails for 900,000 shillings (£190) and has a 30 Watt Solar PV panel which powers 2 LED lights, 2 USB sockets for charging mobile phones, an FM radio, an mp3 music player and a Fan which drives air through the cooker, raising the cooking temperature and eliminating smoke. Brilliantly simple, appropriate technology. It can burn charcoal residue (dust and small pieces) which is MUCH cheaper than standard charcoal. Finally, pieces of volcanic rock are used to trap and re-radiate the heat – this further improves the efficiency of the cooker.
A simpler, cheaper model is available for 550,000 shillings (£118) which can burn either firewood or charcoal and has a 20 Watt Solar panel which powers 2 LED lights, 1 USB socket and a Fan.
The Eco Stove can be used at any time and in any season, whereas Solar Cookers are most appropriate during the long hot dry season.
We now think that both Eco Stoves and Solar Cookers have a place in Uganda, with the Eco Stove having the edge! The Haines Solar Cooker costs about £20.
Adjumani to Palabek
An excellent piece on the BBC today on the resilience, initiative, and leadership shown by many refugees, especially women. The refugee camp mentioned, Adjumani, is an established one, it is 75 miles from the brand new camps at Palabek. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/in-pictures-39998759
Children at Palabek Ogili Camp
Quick update following the Comedy Night on Saturday 10th June 2017.
After paying the comedian we’ve raised £536.40 for the 56 refugees at Palabek camp.
Massive thanks to Phil Beswick for doing a really great warm up, to Mark Palmer for such a brilliant main show and to everyone who supported on the night or sent donations. If anyone would still like to give, please use our donate page at http://arep4change.org/donate
We aim to send the money to Uganda in a few days time.