Arts is Peace, Arts is Power!
In northern Uganda, future hope was destroyed for many
children. The disastrous war led by the Lord's Resistance Army has created an
unbelievable tragedy. Many of the child soldiers and their children suffer from
diseases, since no adequate medical care in early childhood, such as preventive
vaccination was ensured. Visiting a school or the start of a training was
impossible. The trauma of war is just omnipresent in Gulu and shows up in
widespread alcohol and drug abuse, violence and rape, HIV / AIDS and many
Our partner organization in Gulu, "The Galaxy Poets of Northern
Uganda" uses the power of art to raise awareness about abuse and to bring
peace to the community. For this purpose, events are organized in which
children and young adults may present their kind of art: poetry, drama, dance
People help People - One World supports these events to attract as
many people to this initiative, either as a spectator or actor. Take a look at the pictures below:
Some selective actors:
Program for the local community campaign in Unyama sub-county 4thApril 2014
Arrival of the Galaxy Team
8: 00am- 8:30am
Meeting community leaders
Distribution of fliers and road run mobilization.
All members and leaders
9: 00am- 9:30am
Arrival of community members
9: 30am- 10:00am
Welcome remarks from the LCI
Speech from the LCII
Speech from the speaker-Unyama sub- county
Introduction of galaxy team to community
James Onono Ojok
Speech from Chairman Galaxy team
James Onono Ojok
Performance from break dancers
Galaxy dance team
11:50am- 12: 20pm
Performance from community traditional dance group (community care commission women’s group)
Community care commission women’s` dance troop group)
Poetry performance from the galaxy team
Lamwaka ketty, Atim Sarah, Uma Patrick and Ojok James Onono.
Testimonies of change from local community people.
01:20pm- 01: 40pm
Information sharing about reports on GBV, alcoholism, drug abuse and child care and Neglect
Ojok Isaac Newton
One on one interview with community members.
Ojok Isaac Newton and James Onono Ojok
Closing remarks from LCIII representative.
Speaker Unyama sub-county.
Galaxy team and community
Mr. Obote Benson, the local councilor III of Unyama Briefed the community on the change that is happening in Unyama Sub-county, he said that “since the time the first campaign happened in the community of Unyama, the message was retained by most of the community members and that means that there was learning that took place last year” how extended his most inner gratitude to the youthful galaxy team for bringing such an amazing course towards community change; he said “it is exceptional for youth of these days to do such tremendous thing in a devastated region like in Northern- this is the only uprising youth group who come to the grass root community as far as I know in Northern Uganda”.
Northern Uganda is still being affected to date by the war that nearly took two decades, in Unyama Sub County is one that has also been affected. He said that since last year following the campaigns and teaching s that the galaxy team has done in Unyama, there has come exception experience to the surprise of Unyama community, so many youth have changed their lives and there are still more of them changing day and night- the campaign doesn’t only stop with the campaign from the galaxy poets of Northern Uganda, we as leaders continue to make sure that what galaxy team has done continues to be in light as they look for more opportunities of finance to come back every time they can, we shall continue to support them in our various capacities for a bigger change in Northern Uganda. He urged the youth and the community of Unyama to take up the step the galaxy has taken for change or to embrace the struggle so that we work together to change our community for s better tomorrow.
Representative of Sub-County
The speaker represented the chairman LCIII, Mr. Kidega Sam of the sub-county and he extended his gratitude and happiness for the galaxy team coming to Unyama again, on his behalf the speaker said that the Chairman of the sub-county in his message which was conveyed by the speaker he said that people need to look back and forth and then see how far we have come; with their continued support to help galaxy team achieve their dream he asked the community to be with us in harmony and take the good example that young people of the galaxy team are trying to show.
He made his remarks at the campaign by congratulating the galaxy team for coming back to Unyama for the second time and for working with the local leaders and also for the good mobilization that the galaxy team has done together with local leaders and the community in the sub-county.
The rate of alcoholism in the sub-county is gradually reducing according to the report from his office, most youth used to spend a lot of time drinking at the bars and shops along the road but with the sensitization by galaxy team and leaders enforcing laws against drinking there has been a steady decrease in alcoholism; the speaker said that it was the impact that the Galaxy poets of Northern Uganda caused that made them to debate an ordinance in the sub-county which was set to help them fight the rate of drinking and alcohol abuse which has caused an increase to rape and defilement and child neglect and abuse in the sub county, the police are also helping them in the fight against gender based violence in the sub-county.
What has changed in Unyama?
The rate of drug abuse has been reduced; we are now fighting hand in hand with the police, some of the drugs which were being used included marijuana, mirungiand chewing tobacco.
65% of the youth now have gone back to school but initially most of them were doing only drug abuse in the center and being idle.
Cases of gender violence reported in the sub-county are steadily reducing.
The rate of women drinking in bars has been brought to a minimum level (cases are now very rare)
We have observed tremendous change in the lives of the community members.
What needs to be done?
More community sensitization
Identify and Support talents in the community for creativity development
A more strengthened coordination from time to time