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Proudly Supporting

Proudly Supporting

Compulsory Viewing Stop Kony - Horrific Abuse of Children

By Yvette Vignando - 7th March 2012

You absolutely must stop for half an hour and watch this movie - after watching, I am sure you will want to take some action - that action may be simply to write to someone, or it may be to support a variety of organisations that care for children rescued from criminals like Kony. If you care for children, for humanity, please take some time this week and educate yourself about this atrocity.

Jason Russell, father of young son Gavin, who also stars in this video, has created an extraordinary film about a man called Joseph Kony, a criminal who formerly operated in Uganda - the film is called: Kony 2012.

10 years ago Jason met a child called Jacob in Uganda in central Africa - Jacob told Jason about the violent murder of his brother and why he, and so many other children feared for their lives. Since then Jason and others have been working to stop this horrific abuse of children - boys are kidnapped and forced to use guns, to kill and torture and maim others ... and kill their own parents - girls are kidnapped and used a sexual slaves. Kony calls his group "the LRA".

Incredibly, this movie reports that over 30,000 children have been affected by Kony's regime. Over a period of 20 years. A friend who is from South Africa tells me that she has known of Kony for about 25 years, or possbly more.

The head prosecutor for the International Criminal Court has placed Kony at the top of their "wanted" list.

And part from moving you, perhaps making you want to support this campaign, this is an inspiring story about how easily young people can make a difference, and how easily you can too. However, please be aware that in supporting this particular campaign, you should be aware of some of the controversy reported about the organisation Invisible Children. I am not in a position to ascertain the things reported, but I feel confident, based on other reporting, that Kony is a criminal, Kony should be arrested, and I think awareness is a good thing. It is understood that Kony now operates in the Congo region of Africa.

"No child should live in fear of being abducted or killed."

Parents are warned that there are some disturbing images in this video - and some of the content is disturbing. Even more disturbing images and stories will no doubt be reported in mainstream media - so please consider whether your child is old enough to be watching.

You might consider buying something from this particular campaign to help make Kony "famous" - perhaps "infamous" is more appropriate - or you may find your own way to raise awareness of the plight of these children.

We would appreciate you sharing links to organisations that support children rescued from Kony's crimes, or that support displaced children - to give additional or alternative ways for you to support. Our list so far:

The UN Refugee Agency - Australia for UNHCR

Charities Working Within Africa

Child Rescue Ministries Uganda

Watoto - Caring for Children in Uganda

And finally if you would like to read more, both about the crimes of Kony, and about debate on the organisation Invisible Children, try any of these links:

Obama Takes on the LRA - from Foreign Affairs

Invisible Children in the Spotlight

Joseph Kony and Crownsourced Intervention

Stop Kony Yes but Don't Stop Asking Questions

Kony 2012 creator responds to criticism

Joseph Kony is Not in Uganda (and other complicated things)

Invisible Children's Response to Criticism

My Discussion of Kony 2012 on Channel 9 Mornings show, Channel 9,  8 March 2012

Taking Kony 2012 Down a Notch

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