shared by Experito Bulamu and Cindy May
After visiting the pond where Alfred fetched his water, we went to visit Alfred’s mother and family at the IDP (Internally Displaced Persons) camp. We found Robin, Alfred’s younger brother, and the other kids without anybody attending to them in the camp as their mothers had gone to queue for relief food.
When I (Cindy) inquired about Robin’s health, Experito answered:
Robin is plagued by the worms and malnutrition.The place is in dire lack of what can be used to de-worm kids let alone the medical personnel to help. Their nearer source of water was the bore hole (well) which broke down in January 2009 and it has not yet been repaired. People have to go these days to different streams and gather the dirty water which has collected after the rains. These streams are not even near. Alfred told me they are the only ones with a toilet (pit latrine) in the whole village. This means that rains wash down the fecal waste into the streams and pollute the water which they use!
So, you ask, how much is de-worming and supplemental decent nutrition?! Unbelievable:
De-worming is 75 cents and needs to be done twice a year. Adding an egg a day to Robin’s diet will cost $3.50/ a month. And repairing the boreholes? (Four are in need of repair) About $125 each.
“These IDP camps (in northern Uganda) were supposed to be safe harbors where people could live protected from Kony’s atrocities, but in these camps adults and children are subjected to the most unhygienic conditions possible…Such a disturbance in God’s creation is intolerable.” ~From the Dust by Kefa Sempangi
Several years ago, a friend handed me a copy of a DVD titled “The Invisible Children.” She insisted I watch it. I’m so glad she did, as we met Experito and Alfred as a result. I’d like to pass it along to you and invite you to watch it as well. This film provides amazing insight into the devastation and horror that birthed these IDP camps. Below is a description of the film, and a link to watch “The Invisible Children” online.
In the spring of 2003, three young Americans traveled to Africa. What they found was a tragedy that disgusted and inspired them. A story where children are weapons and children are the victims. The “Invisible Children: rough cut” film exposes the effects of a 20 year-long war on the children of Northern Uganda. These children live in fear of abduction by rebel soldiers, and are being forced to fight as a part of violent army. This wonderfully reckless documentary is fast paced, with an MTV beat, and is something truly unique. To see Africa through young eyes is humorous and heart breaking, quick and informative – all in the very same breath. See this film, you will be forever changed.