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Lauren Elio's Fundraiser:

Go Uganda!

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Lauren Elio

THE STORY:

I, Lauren Elio, will be traveling to the Lukome Center in Northern Uganda to work with ChildVoice International, an organization committed to the rehabilitation and renewal of female former child soliders and their children.

This region has been ravaged by war for over 20 years due to a rebellion lead by Joseph Kony and his group, the Lord’s Resistance Army, a cult-like rogue militia whose use of ideology and violence has caused unspeakable violence, slaughtering thousands.

As a result of the LRA’s presence, thousands of children have been abducted and forced into being foot soldiers, sex slaves, and mules for commanders of the group. Some children manage to escape. Naturally, following their time as soldiers, the children suffer immense psychological, spiritual, and physical trauma. Local nongovernmental organizations have begun rehabilitation work to restore what has been lost through the experience of war violence. Child Voice International is the NGO that I have chosen to work with in order to be a part of the healing transformation in Uganda.

One of the most important parts of healing is finding one’s own voice. Children already face the challenges of being a marginalized group. Coupled with severe trauma, they risk living an existence in which they believe they are not worth being heard. ChildVoice’s multi-faceted approach of education, vocational training, counseling, and community building ensures that the Lukome Centre is not only a haven of rest but also a well-rounded home of transformation for these children. The curriculum has a firm foundation in using drama and music as part of its art program, and I hope to introduce drawing and painting circles as well. The beauty of this work is in its simplicity and profound ability to reach those places within the human spirit that have been silenced by pain and grief.

I ask that you join me in this joyful call to reawaken life in the children of Northern Uganda. I am confident that your hearts will be blessed in your choice to support this peacebuilding work, and I pray now that as you read this you will open your heart to consider how you might contribute to my humble efforts as a peacemaker at Lukome.

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