Update on March 16, 2012
Thanks for pledging support to the international effort to stop Joseph Kony.
The last week has been overwhelming. We always dreamed that the LRA would reach this level of global awareness, but we NEVER saw this coming. Thank you for making the seemingly impossible a reality.
But we all know that awareness is only the first step of the equation. In order to achieve our goal of bringing a permanent end to LRA violence, we have to turn this newfound awareness into informed action. And we don't have any time to waste. So here's where we start.
Hit the Streets:
Take this message offline and into the real world. Slap a sticker on your phone, laptop, bike, or car. Download a PDF of the posters for free: http://invisiblechildrenstore.myshopify.com/. Confidently ask businesses and cities to place these posters in prominent, high-traffic locations. Remember: be respectful and only put KONY 2012 materials on your own property unless you have explicit permission. #KONY2012
Engage Your Policymakers:
Our elected leaders have the power to take action and they have before because of you. But it's time for them to renew their commitment to bringing a permanent end to LRA violence. Tell them why this is important to you, and ask them what they can do to see Kony arrested and help those affected. Find the contact info for your senators (http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm)and representatives (https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml), and hit them up.
Here are some ways you can get in touch:
- Write a letter by hand and drop it in the mail
- Email, Facebook, and Tweet them
- Call their offices
- Schedule a face-to-face meeting: http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/2241/p/salsa/web/common/public/signup?signup_page_KEY=6516
Contact your Members of Congress Crash Course
- Find out who your members of Congress are and their contact info. Google is your friend. If you live in the U.S., you have 1 representative and 2 senators. It's easier than you think. Their job is to listen to what you care about. Just ask them what they are doing to stop LRA violence and help affected communities.
- Be yourself--speak from the heart. There are no "wrong" words when you're talking about why this issue is important to you. And be nice--your words will carry more weight.
We can all agree that the LRA needs to be stopped. But achieving that simple goal is actually very complicated, and it's our responsibility to be informed activists. Below is some information and resources to start with:
Current LRA Activity
-The LRA has not been active in Uganda since 2006, but they're currently carrying out attacks in DR Congo, Central African Republic, and South Sudan.
-1,012 people have been killed and 2,224 people abducted since December 1, 2009.
-45 people were abducted in February 2012. The LRA Crisis Tracker (http://www.lracrisistracker.com/) has the most current updates about LRA activity.
-440,000 were displaced by the LRA in CAR, DRC, and South Sudan as of August 2011 (http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/map_1044.pdf).
-Read a report from Human Rights Watch's Anneke Van Woudenberg: http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/03/09/how-catch-joseph-kony
-Read testimonies from recent LRA victims in DR Congo that were printed in Nicholas Kristof's column in the New York Times:
This has been a big week for all of us, but more importantly for the conversation about bringing a permanent end to LRA violence. And that's what it's about, not Invisible Children or KONY 2012. It's about peace--and people all around the world working together to achieve it. Let's make it happen. We're just getting started.