<Ned> Front Porch
Comment by Gabriel Stauring
Yes, from going around for three years with this, I would say that you both, Linda and Mark, got it right. "Knowing" alone will not do it. It has to be more of an experience.
It's what we are attempting with our Stop Genocide Now projects. With i-ACT and Camp Darfur we are really working at building relationships. We're moving to make it a lot more interactive, so that it is not just passive watching on this side.
From our first three visits to the camps, our next step is i-ACT Forward, which will involve helping to bring secondary education to camps in Eastern Chad. It will be a lot more than building some walls. It will be bringing communities together. Communities here in the US (and hopefully in other parts of the world) will help with the schools, but they will then get to meet the kids that will be benefiting from them; they will meet their families; and they'll learn about their hopes and dreams. The refugees will also get to know the communities that are helping them. It'll be a very interactive, mutually beneficial and educational, experience. These will be relationships that last and that, hopefully soon, accompany the displaced back to a peaceful Darfur. They tell us that education is what gives them hope for the future. They want to rebuild a "stronger Darfur."
We're helping organize a concert on Sept 15 in Topanga, CA. It will be a benefit for the i-ACT Forward schools. We project that there'll be enough to cover the first school, building and running for one year. We are working on the allowing regular interaction, and it should be coming soon. We'll start working on the second school right away.
To see pictures of the real people, the faces behind the numbers, that we're trying to help, here's an album: