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QU students join the RESCUE
It was a packed crowd in Buckman Theater on March 23, as a group of young adults traveling the United States with the non-profit organization “Invisible Children” attempted to raise student awareness.
With the help of the Albert Schweitzer Institute, they came to share a message and alert the students and public about a typically unknown problem that they believe we can all help resolve.
Before attending this event, many people in the audience weren’t aware that for the last 23 years the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), led by Joseph Kony, has captured around 30,000 children and enlisted them as soldiers in Uganda’s violent civil war. According to Invisible Children’s Web site, “It is estimated that more than 90 percent of the LRA’s troops were abducted as children.”
The hour-long documentary explained how three young men’s trip to Uganda in 2003 opened their eyes to the atrocities that were occurring due to Africa’s longest war. The history of the war was explained, as well as past peace efforts led by Invisible Children which have failed. After seeing shocking images of the child victims, the film called the audience to action to bring peace to Northern Uganda.
Two roadies from the organization then explained the ways in which they could raise awareness and become active in the Invisible Children movement through, “action, awareness, and money.”
Those interested in getting involved were asked to wear the same two Invisible Children t-shirts from March 25 until April 25 in order to spark discussion to alert others about this conflict.
Next, people wishing to donate money were informed of the “Tri” campaign, which asks for a minimum of three dollars a week until the child soldiers are brought home.
Lastly, on April 25 citizens across the world will “abduct themselves” in 100 cities in nine different countries. The purpose of the event is to gain the attention of the media and celebrities. Participants will wait to be “rescued” by these prominent figures, just as the child soldiers are waiting to be rescued from the LRA.
Many Quinnipiac students were extremely moved after Invisible Children’s “The Rescue of Joseph Kony’s Child Soldiers” documentary.
Freshman Pat Spillane was “shocked at the maiming of the survivors, as well as the lack of international response.” He said he found the story “very inspiring.”
“I want to get active, and donate my time in any way,” Spillane said.
“I thought it was very informative and well put together,” sophomore Marissa Kameno said. “There were some brutal pictures, but I thought they really did a good job focusing on the whole concept.”
“I think it shared an important message; this is something that three guys started, and it shows that you can do something to make a difference,”she said.
In fact, Quinnipiac students plan on making a difference as well. For those who are interested in attending the rescue, a Facebook group has been created called, “Quinnipiac Gets Abducted. 4/25/09.”
According to Lawrence Bremer, Quinnipiac is looking to start its own Invisible Children club on campus.
“The club still needs to be approved, but I want it to be a big club on campus, not just one with only a small percentage of students participating,” Bremer said.
He said that the club would help with “fundraising, creating awareness on campus, and trying to send people to the Rescue.”
Quinnipiac students have already promised to take action regarding this issue. Students like Kameno and Spillane will be participating in the RESCUE as a contribution to the movement toward peace in Uganda. According to the roadies, “This war can be ended in a day.”