For the past year, The Professor has talked about wanting to go to Africa some day and dreamily described the beautiful landscape. The Invisible Children program shook him. He learned of Joseph Kony and the Lord's Resistance Army who are trying to overthrow the government in Uganda. To that end, they have abducted children, turning them into soldiers, and killed thousands of civilians. In 2001 they were officially declared a terrorist organization by the U.S. Patriot Act. The Professor explained to me his distress saying, "I thought Africa was this perfect place." It broke my heart that the poor kid had his illusion shattered, especially since it was surprising to me that the illusion still existed for him at age 12.
Invisible Children website and set a goal of getting $150 in donations. I thought that was a little ambitious, but he was determined. Thanks to the generosity of family and friends, he blew past that milestone and raised $200 in just a couple of weeks. This past weekend he received a large envelope in the mail from Invisible Children. Inside was a certificate congratulating him on becoming a member of "The Benjamins Club", someone who has raised more than $100. In addition there was a lovely reed bracelet from Africa, which now sits proudly on top of his desk in his room. (Other bracelets and their stories can be seen here.)
Please take a moment and read the story of the war in Uganda and its effect on children here. And if you feel inclined, please make a donation through The Professor's fundraising page below. This kind of children-helping-children attitude gives me hope for the future.