Guest Blogger : Jackie Chapman. You can follow her blog at www.jaqchapman.com
Last Sunday my church hosted Falling Whistles, an organization campaigning for peace in Congo. Yves told his story of escape with his family from Congo (though at 10 he did not understand the concept of ‘refugee’) and now his work to get back to a peaceful Congo.Meet Yves.
Congo is the home of the world’s deadliest war since WWII. On a trip to Africa in 2007, Sean Carasso wrote a journal entry about five boys that he encountered in Congo. I could write a summary here but I think you need to read it: Falling Whistles: A Journal Entry. That was how Falling Whistles came to be.
Now the group makes its way around the country, calling people to be “whistleblowers for peace” in two ways.
One way to help is advocate for peace in Congo. Elections in Democratic Republic of Congo are scheduled for November 28. Pray for stability in the area: DR Congo election: Rights groups warn of instability (BBC News). Falling Whistles also has an iPhone app (find it here) that aims to transform the petition. Rather than asking for signatures, they are asking for your face. Take a picture and each face will be faxed to the White House. Get your friends’ faces, too. (I had mine taken at the event, since I don’t have an iPhone.)
Another way to help is make a donation or buy a whistle. Monies go to partnerships with community leaders in Congo that are rehabilitating children through education, art, sports, music, human rights education, vocational skills training, medical treatment and nutritional services. (The legal non-profit how-they-use-our-money info is here.)
The whistles that Falling Whistles sell (online, retail or at events) are meant to start conversations — for you to be a whistleblower for peace. You can tell the story of the boys sent to the frontlines, armed only with a whistle. You can talk about the upcoming elections in Congo and, with your iPhone app, get faces to the President to advocate for peace in Congo.
I bought a whistle. I sent my face. It’s easy enough to do. Look into it.