A visit to Uganda Refugee Camps
Millions of people in Sudan and Uganda are still suffering devastating starvation. The recent conflict has forced 1.6 million people out of their homes and into refugee camps. Our partners, Africa Inland Church (AIC) are on the ground in South Sudan and Uganda to serve and help as many as they can.
A team from AIC recently took a pastoral trip to visit two refugee camps in Northwest Uganda. They visited the Rhino camp in Arua and the Bidi Bidi refugee camp in Yumbe, which is now the largest refugee camp in the world. The refugee population in Bidi Bidi is almost the same as the local community, currently hosting 279,000 refugees.
AIC wanted to visit these camps to encourage and pray with the refugees and to listen to their stories.
“It was indeed and emotional and transforming moment to each of us who visited.” Ark, AIC team.
The food ration has been reduced from 12kg per month to 6kg and there are issues of hygiene including a lack of sanitary pads. Girls are using anything they can including blankets and some are simply sitting in the sand for the duration of their menstruation period.
The AIC team came across many issues of livelihood and trauma. They met a widow from Yei who left behind two of her children during the crisis: “I will cook food, but when it comes to meal time, I cry and I don’t touch the food as I think about my children and want them back. I don’t know whether they are alive or not.”
Another lady at the camp said: “we have run from death by bullets in South Sudan, but are now facing death by hunger. Where can we go.”
A teenage girl said: “We thought we could continue with our education in the camps, but now our education has become early marriages.” She knelt down and with her hands raised up she said “my spiritual fathers, help us.”
These stories are similar for many refugees across Sudan and Uganda. Please pray for them as they strive to stay alive. Ask that God will comfort them, provide for them and deliver them.
To support AIC, you can give to our South Sudan Famine appeal at the link below.