1.28.2012

Sometimes it is just hard to think of a good name for a post....

From L to R: Peter Potosa, Randy, Jason, Majur Marwol, James Majur Ater.

Howdy all,

True to how we have historically rolled, we went a few months with not-a-whole-lot going on. Our trip is rescheduled for March. We are very excited because James Majur Ater will be joining us this time.

James is the chairman of the Worldwide SPLA Veterans Diaspora (the official organization for displaced Sudanese veterans across the world). He has been instrumental in our success overseas and this will be his first time home in over 25 years. This will surely be a momentous trip and I personally can't wait to see everyone freak out because James is back.

Now on to the Justice Jam. We are holding an event at the Refuge in Overland Park on February 17th to raise funds for the ongoing work in Sudan. For details on the event, visit http://Facebook.com/FieldsOfFury (also a shameless plug for my new band. There will be three bands, a presentation by some of us from Hope Sudan and then a time of prayer and worship. This is sure to be a great time.

Were highly excited to be going bak and seeing how things are going. As always we'll be keeping everyone updated.

Randy

11.08.2011

Pushed Back

Hey all,

Just a quick note: our trip has been pushed back due to some unforeseen circumstances. We will be going in February as part of a larger group, but there are some exciting things in the works as always. The well is working finally and our friends have access to some awesomely clean water right near their homes. This also means it will be agriculture time soon! More to come as details develop further. Thanks for bearing with us.

Randy

9.20.2011

It's on. Like totally on. Seriously.



Hello to all of our friends. You may not remember us. You may have thought we dropped off the face of the planet or got swallered up by a giant rock python. Well, we didn't. I (Randy) was just being really lazy. Forgive us for the lack of updates, but for a few months, things have been quiet in Out Of The Dust/Hope Sudan Charity Organization - land.

Thankfully, that's all about to change. Jason and I are tremendously excited to announce that we'll be going back to Sudan at the end of October to lay the groundwork for the Hope Sudan agriculture project, wrap up some HSCO-related business in Juba, visit the orphanage in Nimule, and no doubt spend some time with our friends in Cueibet county. We couldn't be more excited and we will of course be keeping you up to date like we did in January right here on this blog.

We'll be posting specifics on what we're doing, our plan of attack, etc in the coming weeks. But it's good to know that we're going!

Grace and Peace

Randy and Jason







7.08.2011

happy birthday to the Republic of Southern Sudan!

We are a bit disappointed that we couldn't be there... plane tickets are too flippin' expensive right now, and unfortunately there's been some violence in Cueibet County as of late. However, we are praying that the birth of the world's newest nation would be the most peaceful in history, and we hope you are joining with us.

On the missions front: we are currently trying to plan our trip to implement the agriculture project in Cueibet County towards the end of October/beginning of November, right after their rainy season ends. More news to come on that in the following days.

Hope everyone is doing well. Thanks for your support as always!

5.22.2011

Water... at long last!

In lieu of a picture of the new well, we're providing you a picture from our 2009 trip where we gathered and prayed around the very spot where Samuel, Silas and the others at the church chose to plant the well.


We are overjoyed to be able to tell you that at long last, after 3+ years of planning, fighting, negotiating, wondering what's happening, and maybe even a little crying... there is a water well drilled and operational at the site of the Chumnyiel Lighthouse Church. We can't even begin to explain the significance of this development.

Water is everything. You may say "well, DUH." but the fact of the matter is, when we wake up in the morning, we get to go 10 feet to the bathroom or the kitchen and turn the faucet on. It's a different story in Sudan, and we can attest to it. Every morning you wake up, you (or the women, actually) get the containers and walk to the water well. Sometimes kilometers! You wait in line, sometimes for hours while the cattle camp guys get to cut in line so their cows can drink (you may even have to pump the water for them) and after your wait, you get to carry the heavy containers of oft-undrinkable water back home, only to do it all over again.

In addition, the people at the church can now begin making bricks for buildings and they will be able to implement the drip irrigation process to start the agriculture project and begin a local economy!


In other developments, please check out the new HopeSudan.net; the web-home of our international charity which will be the outlet of all the humanitarian aid.

We're hoping to make a trip soon to Cueibet to assess the specific needs of the agriculture project, meet with local leaders to discuss implementation and say hi to our friends. We'll have more specifics on the grandiose scheme for this year in the coming weeks.

In the mean time, check out HopeSudan.net and thank you for all of your support!

Thanks,
Randy, Jason and Awan

5.09.2011

The club can't even handle us right now.

Been a hot minute since we've updated you all on the goings-on with our friends and our work, so I thought it high time to make a post.

Jason and I had the opportunity to attend a wild celebration in Overland Park on a Saturday night in April. About 500 Sudanese (and a small handful of Americans) packed a small convention center for good food, speeches from SPLA officials and leaders of the Sudanese Diaspora, and most important: random outbursts of song and dance. It was truly something special to see. I took some video with my phone and I apologize for the quality, but I think it will give you a good idea of what it was like :).

video

In other news, we've continued working on planning the agriculture project in Abiriu; we have established contact with some people who are very knowledgeable in drip irrigation with experience implementing these types of projects. We are hoping to make a trip to survey the area planned for farming later this year and begin implementation by the beginning of 2012. There is a great list of needs for doing this (as one would imagine) and we will have detail on that soon.

We've given the Hope Sudan International Charity website a facelift and invite you to check it out. We still have tons of footage and pictures that we need to compile and post so you can get a real taste of the trips we make.

We'll have more updates soon on the projects and on the Hope Sudan site.

Until then,
Randy

3.18.2011

breaking ground

It has not been that long since we started digging in and really pushing hard for the development of South Sudan.  So much has been done and so much more is needed.  We now have decent roads from Rumbeck to Cueibet and an excellent vehicle for transportation.  The local community has embraced us in every way and we have an open door to help change this entire community.  As I write this the 2 wells are being finished, one for the community and one for our next project... Agriculture.   I will be the first to admit that I personally know nothing about this issue.  However, what I do know is this; it has fallen on us to be the very people to research and develop a system of irrigation to coincide with our newly drilled water resources.  As far as I know we are still the only ones partnering with these beautiful people to assist in their personal rebuilding of their nation.  Each region is very different from the next and the needs of South Sudan are greater than I can list.  But we know what the Gok Dinka have expressed to us personally.  We are not reaching the whole of the south, only one region.  Water, agriculture, and education..... this is our vision.  I personally believe we can develop a system of agriculture that will far surpass anything the South has ever seen and empower the people to become self sufficient.  They have been running for the greater part of 5 decades and those who are now in place have never known anything except survival.  They have not been given the chance to develop.  But a new day has come.  South Sudan has successfully separated from the north and the iron grip of tyranny and control has ended.  Now is the time for development. Now is the time for change.  We have a wide open door to move ahead and give hope to a people that have never known anything but fear and insecurity.   Join us in this mission.  Help us change the face of a nation.  We welcome any input, thoughts, experience......  we need all the help we can get.   Against all odds everything that we have put our hand to has succeeded and I have no doubt this endeavor will follow suit.   Thanks again to everyone who has sacrificed to see this through.  Stick with us.