The needs in Sudan are so vast that some of the best work is done by strategic partnerships with indigenous groups within south Sudan itself.
CASS is working with these organizations to more effectively deliver programs:
Over the last number of years CASS representatives have visited Ottawa regularly, meeting with various foreign affairs minister, CIDA representatives and both Jean Chretien and Paul Martin. The purpose of such meetings was to encourage the Government of Canada to take a more active role on the ground in south Sudan. The government has been involved in the past through United Nations relief efforts and through sponsoring various peace initiatives among communities, but because of the civil war officials were hesitant to assist in more development projects.
We are happy to report that the government's humanitarian arm - the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) - is now cooperating with CASS in the construction of two primary schools in the Aweil East area of south Sudan, as well as helping to fund women's literacy programs and purchasing a large grinding mill that will permit the women the time required for broadening their education.
As peace takes hold in this needy part of Sudan, CASS deeply appreciates the Canadian government's willingness to back that peace with concrete efforts. Following years of feeling isolated by internal conflicts, the people of south Sudan will see a practical expression of compassion by the Canadian people through CIDA.
One of the main relief and development agencies in all of Sudan, the Diocese of Rumbek serves an area covering 120,000 square kilometers, with a population of 3,800,000. This is a staggering amount of people to assist. Key to CASS's interests was the part of the Diocese of Rumbek's mandate which reads: "The right to education of every child, regardless of ethnicity, culture, gender, religion and socio-economic status, as well as the access to education of any citizen of New Sudan are guiding principles." With this in mind, CASS is cooperating with the Diocese of Rumbek to build two primary centres along with other related programming.
With a comprehensive peace deal signed between north and south Sudan, the number of southern Sudanese returning to their homeland from neighbouring areas is staggering. A great many of these will be resettling in the area of Aweil East, where CASS is undertaking most of its projects. The need for a legitimate partner "on the ground" in the south is paramount to making sure there is full accountability in the system. With its long history in the area, coupled with its extensive work in relief, education, health care and counseling, the Diocese of Rumbek has become our key partner in the Aweil East area. With its extensive reach, legitimacy and the sheer challenge before it, the "DOR" as it is affectionately called, provides Canadian Aid for South Sudan with its most effective chance for assisting Canadians to make a distinctive difference in the south.
Diocese of Rumbek
P.O. Box 21102
Nairobi Kenya Tel. 254 20 577595
The prospect of starting the YMCA/YWCA in the midst of a civil war was a daunting task. Yet committed Sudanese leaders instinctively understood the need for the kind of programs such an organization could offer. Funding, however, was the greatest challenge. Though many were interested in seeing the "Y" established in south Sudan, the ever-present problems of displaced people, military attacks and political and community uncertainty proved to be major stumbling blocks.
In April 2001, Canadian Aid for South Sudan representatives held preliminary meetings with Peter Ring, a long-time Sudanese proponent of activities and programs for the young victims of the civil war. Since 1998, Peter Ring has worked with Glen Pearson and Jane Roy in efforts to liberate children from slavery in the borderland areas between north and south Sudan. Together they have journeyed into southern Sudan numerous times, concentrating on the Aweil East and Twic county areas. Upon approaching the International YMCA/YWCA and asking that the organization provide rehabilitative and programming support in coordination with CASS, Peter received official approval. Then, in the summer of 2002, CASS provided initial funding to launch the New Sudan YMCA/YWCA and the movement is growing exponentially.
Peter Ring has a rich experience in relief and development work. He is also southern Sudanese (born in Twic County) and understands the area well. He was the first southern Sudanese leader to run the Sudan Council of Churches. His past history with CASS representatives has resulted in an effective partnership as it relates to the challenges of children in southern Sudan. He has recently been appointed to his current position of Chief Coordinator for the New Sudan YMCA/YWCA.
CASS has contracted with Peter Ring to provide athletic programs, counseling, rehabilitation of former child slaves and child soldiers and community development programs in Twic County and now in Aweil East County. Plans are now underway to establish branches in other regions of the south Sudan. CASS provides funding for athletic equipment, instruction and memberships to the YMCA/YWCA. In particular, CASS is coordinating with Peter Ring and his associates to provide more leadership opportunities for the young girls of south Sudan.
New Sudan YMCA/YWCA
PO Box 26388-00504
Tel. 0722 841 748
Dealing with slavery issues has always been fundamental to the mandate of Canadian Aid for South Sudan. Though CASS representatives spent a number of years assisting in the freeing of slaves in south Sudan, it has now begun the process of providing education and support for those women and children previously held in slavery but who have precious little to come back to once they are released.
Free the Slaves is an abolitionist group based in Washington D.C. and has a reputation for undertaking well-researched activities designed to combat slavery around the world. It also has offices in Los Angeles, Oxford, Accra, Bogotá and New Delhi. It seeks to maximize resources for the liberation, rehabilitation of contemporary slaves and undertakes research and outreach and outreach programs as well.
Dr. Kevin Bales is perhaps the world's leading expert on the slavery issue worldwide and is the present director of Free the Slaves. His award-winning book, Disposable People: Modern Slavery in the Global Economy, created a new awakening on the subject of slavery around the world.
CASS representatives Jane Roy and Glen Pearson met Kevin Bales during the production of a documentary on the new abolitionists. It immediately became clear that their desire to eradicate slavery placed them on common ground. Subsequent meetings resulted in a Memorandum of Understanding between the two groups that they would share information and seek to undertake projects together that would battle modern day slavery.
In July 2002, Bales, Pearson and Roy held meetings with various U.S. leaders in Washington D.C. regarding the need to provide rehabilitative support for those southern Sudanese who had been liberated from slavery and needed to rebuild their lives. Assist Director of Free the Slaves, Jolene Smith, accompanied CASS representatives to Aweil East in January 2004. This kind of shared initiative brings about an extra dynamic for both groups and plans are underway to participate in more joint ventures in the future.
Free the Slaves
1326 14th St. N.W.
CSVD exists to promote restoration of Sudanese societies both in Canada and in Sudan that have been damaged by war. With this in mind, CSVD works in the Canadian Sudanese community to provide support and purpose, with an eye to supporting projects that will assist their brothers and sisters in south Sudan. A CSVD board member sits on the board of Canadian Aid for South Sudan to keep us apprised of the developments and to keep us informed if CASS needs to provide even more assistance.
An innovative component of CSVD's mandate is to train and resource Canadian Sudanese volunteers to return to their homeland for a specified period of time in order to assist in development in that African country. In addition, the organization seeks to research and identify areas of need in Sudan and the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) with whom they can partner. As with CASS's projects in neighbouring Nairobi, Kenya, the organization's mandate to assist southern Sudanese also applies to those living in Canada. Canadian Aid for South Sudan delights in partnering with these Canadian Sudanese as they not only seek to establish their lives here in Canada but also to find ways to ways to assist them as they seek to influence peace and development in Sudan itself.
Canadian-Sudanese Volunteers for Development
112 Selkirk Street
London, Ontario, Canada
GOAL is an international humanitarian organization based in Ireland and dedicated to alleviating the suffering of the poorest of the poor in the developing world. Founded in 1977 by Irish sports journalist John O'Shea, GOAL works towards ensuring that vulnerable people have access to food, water, shelter, medical attention and primary education.
GOAL has an impressive track record. It has responded to every major natural and man-made disaster over the past 25 years. GOAL is operational in 18 countries, including Sudan. In fact, it was GOAL's presence there that introduced CASS President Jane Roy to the realities of southern Sudan. Jane volunteered for a month at a GOAL feeding center in the south during the devastating famine in 1999.
Since that time the relationship between CASS representatives and GOAL has continued. Both organizations have partnered in the construction of six primary schools in Twic County, southern Sudan. The schools were completed in late-2003 and will be overseen by the respective local communities. The New Sudan YMCA/YWCA's activities will partly center in these educational institutions.
P.O. Box 66242
Tel. 254-2-724 686
Fax. 254-2-722 496