Conflict in South Sudan continues to bring devastation and loss to hundreds of thousands of people. Over the past three weeks, 30,000 new refuges have fled from Juba to the neighbouring country of Uganda where refugee facilities are being overwhelmed. Uganda is already hosting over half a million refugees, the question is how many more can they receive? Uganda is the third largest host of refugees in Africa after Kenya and Ethiopia.
Susan Keji arriving in Uganda from Juba, South Sudan
Photo and quotations from IRIN Emergency Update, July 2016
Susan Keji is one of the 30,000 refugees who have recently crossed into Uganda. In an interview with IRIN she shared about her experience as soldiers began attacking her community and raided her home. The soldiers killed Susan's husband and two sons, but Susan was able to escape in the chaos with her two younger children.
"I told my kids: Let's run. They might kill us. We ran and ran. We slept the night in the bush. We were all terrified. We spent five days moving from Juba to Nyarabanga, south of Rajaf. We were hungry and thirsty.When we arrived in Nyarabanga, we got some Good Samaritans who helped us out."
A truck driver had picked the mother and two children up and took them to the border. Speaking with relief workers in Uganda, Susan shared how the ongoing violence and patterns of unrest within South Sudan have affected her family.
"It's still hard to believe they are gone. I will continue to mourn my husband and children. I will never see them again. There was no decent burial for them. I am told their bodies were picked up and buried in a mass grave. This is the fourth time I am fleeing into Uganda. We have suffered a lot. Can't these people sympathize with innocent people? We have never enjoyed peace. We are tired of continued violence and wars. I can't do anything to stop the fighting. I can't risk to go back home again."
Relief efforts of FEBAC in South Sudan
Since the outbreak of conflict in South Sudan, Canadian Baptist Ministries has been walking with our partner church the Faith Evangelical Baptist Churches, who have been on the front line of providing relief assistance and help to people displaced by war and conflict in their country.
Please join us in praying and supporting our friends as they reach out with compassion and the love of Christ to their neighbours. Currently, CBM is raising funds to send $20,000 to contribute to food to be distributed to internally displaced families who experienced the horrors of war like Susan and her children.
Erica and I will be meeting with leaders from FEBAC this coming week to discuss a number of urgent challenges that the church is responding to. We are also thankful that during the upcoming Kamp Tumaini that one of the Canadian groups will have opportunity to spend two days with children that have fled to Kenya from the conflict in South Sudan. We pray that this is a time of healing and hope.
You can learn more about how you can be involved by visiting www.cbmin.org or by following this link.