Sunday, August 5, 2012

Invisible Wounds

Earlier today, I received this email message.

Dear Mark,

Thank you for your book: Children No More. My name is David Taransaud. I am an Art Therapist for children and adolescents, a speaker and a trainer at the Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education. After being made redundant earlier this year, I decided to use my redundancy payment to travel to Northern Uganda and set up an Art Therapy service in an orphanage for former child soldiers and young people affected by conflict and trauma.

I came back ten days ago and I am hoping to return in a few months to carry on with the work. This is quite an ambitious project that I have so far managed to finance on my own. I have just finished editing a short movie I made while I was there. As you'll see, I am no Coppola or iMovie genius, but it's real! I would be grateful if you could take the time to watch it.

If you think it's appropriate, I would appreciate if you could forward the link to your many followers or possibly add it to your Blog. I'm hoping it'll help to promote the awareness and the sponsorship of war orphans at the orphanage and with a bit of luck, raise financial funds for further resources. By sending this email, I am keeping my promise to the Kitgum's orphans that they won't be forgotten and I will do my best to raise awareness and help them in any way I can. So I thought of you! I have been told that I have ridiculously large dreams, but they sometimes come true.

And please feel free to give my email address in case people want more information about this project or would like to know how they can support the children at the orphanage.

Thank you very much.

Warm wishes, David
Here's the video.

I found it very moving, as I'm sure you will, too.

After the flap about Invisible Children and Kony, I can understand that some folks may feel reluctant to help in this area.  The problems are real, and the children need help, but I cannot say that I have visited these children myself and verified all of this; I have not.  That said, as near as I can tell from a little Web research, David is a genuinely good guy trying to do genuinely good work.  You can Google him, and you can get more info on the orphans at I obviously intend to support that group. 

I don't have all that many readers or followers of any sort, but if this moves you, if you would also like to support it, please contact David ( or Richard Akena (, the director of the orphanage, and see if you can help.  I suspect even a small contribution would mean a lot. For example, David noted in a later message that just since his video went live, which is a bit over a week ago, the orphanage has received enough contributions to enable them to order 50 bunk beds--which means that kids who for the past six years have been sleeping on dirty floors will now get to have beds. 

Finally, if you want to send toys or childrens' books, those would be awesome.  David said he saw only two such books while he was there, and both had pages missing.  The address is

The Pader Orphans Caring Project
PO Box 5
Acholibur sub country
Pader District

Helping 50 kids won't change the whole world, but it will change their world, and it will be another good step in the fight to help those kids abused by war.  Please think about it. 

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