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November 2016

JRS MABAN NEWSLETTER | November 2016

South Sudan Blues


Since December 2013, the
c o n fl i c t i n t h e c o u n t r y h a s
devastated the lives of millions of
South Sudanese and displaced
more than 2.78 million people. 40
% of South Sudanese are
currently facing emergency or
crisis level food insecurity. On top
of that, South Sudan is where
262,000 refugees came seeking
for refugehalf of whom are
surviving in Maban.

South Sudan is the worst country


after Somalia in all aspects of Day Care Center - Doro Camp
governance (2016 Ibrahim Index
of African Governance). The In an eort to address the needs of the children living with
Global Peace Index gives the disabilities, JRS Maban has recently opened a day care center
lowest rate to South Sudan after
in Doro Refugee camp. Three days a week the center
Syria.
welcomes children with dierent kind of disabilities, such as
The Countrys illiteracy rate is the
Worlds highest: 73% of its cerebral palsy, hydrocephalus and Spina bifida.
population cannot read nor write.
The national economy is Every morning, JRS staff conduct massage and dierent
collapsing with 800% inflation exercises to make the child as independent as possible.
rate over the past year, thus basic
Children play, sing and clap, just like any other children. Every
products are unaffordable to
many people. morning we also oer a space where the caretakers learn new
Despite all these challenges we in skills, meet and share the diculties they face.
JRS do not give up.
As expressed by one mother of a child with cerebral palsy:I
regretted when I gave birth to such a child and I was blaming myself
because the child could not walk even at the age of one year. But due to
JRS regular exercises, my child can now walk and I am happy that my
child can go to school on his own. Dorothy Agoe, Psychosocial
Assistant Coordinator

Jesuit Refugee Service - Maban - South Sudan - Newsletter November 2016 1


November 2016

Home Visitor UNHCR visit to ALC


testimony
On Tuesday 8th of November, we welcomed the visit of the
I am one of the home visitors. I UNHCR colleagues at the Arrupe Learning Centre (ALC).
am happy with the physiotherapy Whyclie Songwa, the Head of Sub-oce Bunj was also a part
skills I got from JRS. I spend most of the visit.
of my day visiting people with
disabilities and elderly in their
homes giving them massage and
muscle exercises.
Sometimes people even come to
my house in the evening
complaining of pain here or
there. I give them a massage and
they go home relieved.
The other day one person who
had been in pain for several days
before massage came back very
happy because she had been
able finally to sleep well.
She told me that she used to go Firstly, the UNHCR team greeted students of all the classes
to the hospital and ask the including our English and Computer courses. Eujin, Antonius,
doctor for drugs, but that my Jockshan and Whycli (in the picture above, from left to right)
hands are better than the drugs. motivated our adult students with words of encouragement.
Before leaving, she asked me
how much she had to pay me for The team was happily surprised to see a good number of
the service, but I told her: this is government ocials attending to our courses. At the same
my contribution to the time, they also encouraged us to make sure that in the next
community, go in peace. intake we reach out and increase the number of female
students in the courses.
As a part of our educational oer at the ALC, all our students
can access a library/computer Lab from 9 am to 5 pm every day
in their own free time. The 10 desktop computers that were
donated by UNHCR few months ago are being used and are
highly appreciated by students at the library /computer Lab.
Recently, we also managed to install Internet access at the
center. Our global and technological Internet access will open
up many new possibilities to our students.
The visit concluded with a brief but fruitful meeting in which
JRS team discussed with UNHCR potential areas of closer
Mariam Luma, home visitor collaboration and synergies between both agencies for the
betterment of the lives of refugees, IDPs and host community
members in Maban.

Jesuit Refugee Service - Maban - South Sudan - Newsletter November 2016 2


November 2016

Insecurity incident
Gulawein ECD School
Dear all, Welcome to our Early Childhood Development
On 22ndof November we had (ECD) School.
to stop our activities due to an
insecurity incident. It was early
morning when we heard heavy
shooting coming from
Dangagi, a village 8 Km South
of Bunj town and just 6 km
from our Arrupe Learning
Center.
Once more, government and
opposition clashed causing
victims and displacement of
people. It was very sad and
discouraging to witness again
the mass movement of civilians
running away to safe their lifes.
Every morning we open the door of our Nursery School to
Immediately, restrictions to
nearly 200 children. We are very proud that more than the half
humanitarian staff movement
of them are girls, and we feel happy to accompany and teach
were applied and UN flights to
them in this moment of their lives. We wish all or students
Maban were cancelled 2 for
could go to University one day.
days.
At this stage, the situation is We are 6 teachers in Gulawinye. Currently, two of us are
apparently calm in Bunj but in studying in the JRS Teacher Training College and other two
Dangagi and further south it members of our academic team are attending JRS English
remains tense and courses in the Arrupe Learning Center.
unpredictable. We keep up our
Things are not always easy and here in Maban we face some
hope for peace.
challenges. Sometimes, due to insecurity, our school has to
remain closed.
Buffalo bicycles in
Maban I would like to raise awareness about the importance of
education. And I thank JRS, especially Fr.Pau, for standing by
our side and to provide us with quality education. Aections.
Rose Joseph, Headmistress ECD Gulawein

Pastoral Visits
In our struggle to spread the Word of God in our County, we
never witnessed such a beautiful opportunity to visit our
Catholic faithful.

Recently we have received 65 November will remain a memorable month for Christian
Buffalo bicycles that are going community in Maban. JRS enabled us to cover distances we
to be used by our team. It is a never imagined by oering mountain bikes to our group of
great support for all of us. catechists.

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November 2016

As a result, we were able to conduct Pastoral visits in dierent


Our Staff: Agustino Loro
out-stations. During the Pastoral visits we discovered that most
Why did you decide to join JRS of the Christian communities meet under a big tree for their
Maban team?
Sunday service.
Before coming to Maban, I was with
JRS Kakuma Kenya and I wanted to
share my past experience with the
team here.
What are the main activities your
department runs in the camp?
Youth empowerment through life
skills and leadership workshops;
sport activities (football, voleyball,
badminton), other games such as
chess, ludo, domino, cards, martial
arts and music. Despite the challenges, many catechumens for the sacraments
of Baptism and First Communion were registered.
What do you enjoy most about your
work with refugees? Villagers and catechists were filled with a comforting sense of
The simplicity of their live and their hope and gratitude. The visits livened up our spiritual journey
willingess to learn more. towards the knowledge of God and the celebration of our faith.
And what part of your job is the Catechists Samuel A. and Thomas B. St. Mark Parish
most challenging?
I love challenges but the language of
Closing Ceremony of the Year of Mercy
instruction is sometimes one of
them. It is my joy to see that my
trainees understand me. I facilitate
both in English and Arabic but
sometimes I still need translation
into a third language.
Can you share with us a special
moment you lived in the camp?
When I see them smiling while
watching football competitions and
dancing during events organized by
Holy Years or jubilees normally occur every 25 years. They
agencies here in Maban.
feature special celebrations and pilgrimages, calls for conver-
sion and repentance, and the oer of special opportunities to
experience Gods grace through the sacraments, especially
confession. The Year of Mercy called for by Francis is the third
extraordinary jubilee since the tradition began 700 years ago.
On 30th October Christian community in Bunj celebrated the
end of the Year of Mercy with a joyful mass. We know that en-
countering mercy can transform our lives, our relationships, our
work, and our ability to embrace and experience all of life. We
feel grateful for this invitation to spread love, kindness, and
unbounded generosity.
Alvar Sanchez, Pastoral Coordinator
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