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#WithRefugees, Doubling Down on Hope

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I am a positive, hopeful, and optimistic person. I believe in humanity and its potential for good and beauty. As I begin my 26th trip to the Darfuri refugee camps on the Chad-Sudan border, my grip on positive hope is being tested by news of unimaginable man-made suffering from around the world. But I will hang on, work, and not let go of hope.

About Syria, I read that, at the very minimum, 652 children were killed in 2016 (those were the confirmed cases). Hundreds more are being used as soldiers. Thousands were displaced. About Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia, and Nigeria, I read that millions of people do not know where their next meal will come from. 1.4 million children will starve this year if nothing is done. At the same time, I read that my country, the United States, might drastically cut its contribution to humanitarian assistance.

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iACT team member Felicia Lee. Photo: Gabriel Stauring/iACT

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The numbers are staggering and mind-numbing. The crises are man-made. As horrible as that is, the fact that man is doing this to other human beings—including children—it also gives me hope. Humans can change this.

I work next to Oumda, a refugee leader from Darfur, who saw dozens of family members killed and led thousands of civilians across the border to safety. He wakes up every morning and, against all odds, makes sure that the children in his camp have an opportunity for a better future and don’t have to experience what he and his generation experienced. I work next to Achta, a mother that saw four children die since the time she had to escape the destruction of her village. She wakes up every morning and finds food for her children and makes sure they go to school to better prepare themselves for life ahead. I work next to the most selfless and dedicated team. iACT’s staff and volunteers wake up and see obstacles as opportunities to be creative.

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Help support sports and education programs for refugees living in eastern Chad and other refugee communities!

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refugees from Darfur, Sudan, living in refugee camps located in Chad.

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A mosaic of people that calls for open arms in welcoming and supporting refugees everywhere.

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current capacity at the RUSA academies

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Help iACT continue to do what it does best:

Support refugees in the forgotten corners of the world through soccer and preschool.

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