Amid the recent wave of violence, Paul and his family were forced to flee the city of Juba. They left with everything they could carry with them, but even their few possessions were eventually surrendered to the fighters.
This is the third time Paul has fled Sudan to seek refuge in Uganda. It was in Uganda that he was able to complete his education and become a teacher. Today, he is a retired man who wants to stay in Uganda with his family, because he does not believe that continual peace in South Sudan will come in his lifetime. Life in the refugee camp can be difficult, so it is hard for Paul not to fear for the safety of his family as they face an uncertain future.
This is the third time Paul has fled Sudan to seek refuge in Uganda.
Paul is just one of thousands of Sudanese people in this heartbreaking situation. Amid this current conflict, it is estimated that an average of 2,500 people are crossing the Sudan border into Uganda each day in search of refuge, food, and shelter. Many refugees arrive in Uganda already suffering from diarrhea or other illnesses. In the camp environment, sanitation issues such as a lack of latrines can pose serious health risks.
World Renew, with generous funding from Integral partner TEAR Australia, is responding by building latrines in the Ugandan Refugee Camp of Bidibidi. When World Renew staff and partners recently visited the camp to inspect 180 of the newly built latrine units, they met with a group of 17 men who claimed to represent the refugees living in the area.
“Please thank the people behind the building of the latrines as they have helped us improve our conditions,” said Ben, one of these men. “Before we had to go in the bushes and open defecation affected us all, but now there are no flies or disease.”
Life in the refugee camp can be difficult, so it is hard for Paul not to fear for the safety of his family as they face an uncertain future.
Ben went on to explain how they wanted to keep the latrines clean and were waiting for the hygiene committee to return to them with tools and materials for cleaning. He also spoke of his concern for his family who he left behind in the city of Yei as all the roads were closed.
Even in this difficult environment, these Sudanese refugees are working hard to make life in the camp as good as possible. These men said they were ready to vote in a leadership group who could carry their concerns to the camp authorities, as well as determine how this group could begin to become self-reliant through livelihood development including growing gardens and forming cooperatives. They also explained their determination to leave the camp and return to South Sudan, where they would help their people escape the slaughter in the countryside. They have not given up hope for their country, and the gift of latrines has helped them experience the love of God and his people. They cannot be forgotten in their time of need.
Will you join World Renew in reaching out to meet the urgent needs of Sudanese refugees? With the rainy season approaching there is the increasing possibility of a cholera outbreak. A donation of $250 covers the cost of one latrine unit which serves 50 families. Give Today.