The last month has been disastrous for the Ituri province around Bunia, with the violence that started in our director Mozart’s home village sparking an explosion of tit-for-tat reprisals, and the killing of an estimated 800 people in the time since.
In addition about 15,000 homes have been burned, and there are upwards of 200,000 displaced people seeking shelter from the violence, a majority in Bunia. An estimated 60,000 have fled across the border to Uganda. As it turns out, there is emerging evidence that the government may have sparked the recent violence to provide justification to once again defer democratic elections.
It is a very sad and complicated scenario, but in this context, HCLS teachers and staff as well as Mozart’s church have taken in hundreds of people with very limited resources. Bill Osborne, the CEO of our parent organisation Australia HOPE International initiated an emergency appeal to raise funds to allow Mozart to provide food, medicine and shelter to these refugee families, and yesterday the staff at HCLS were able to distribute 1200kg of beans, 1500kg of rice, 150kg of salt and 300 litres of cooking oil to 270 displaced people. This is likely to only last 3 or 4 days, and we encourage you to consider your ability to donate to the emergency fund to allow this relief effort to continue. Please use the link below and in the comments section write “HCLS Emergency Fund”.