John Bul Dau, one of the “Lost Boys of Sudan,” will speak about his journey from growing up in war-torn Sudan to his position now as a prominent public voice raising awareness about the plight of Sudanese in U.S and around the world on Wednesday, Nov. 7, at 7 p.m. in the Lane University Center Alice R. Manicur Assembly Hall.
In 1987, Bul Dau’s village was attacked by government troops involved in civil war between the Muslim-controlled government in northern Sudan and the non-Muslims in southern Sudan. The attack scattered his family, and Dau was forced to travel for three months on foot to reach relative safety in Ethiopia.
Dau stayed in a refugee camp in Ethiopia for four years until civil war broke out once again, and he was forced to flee. He wandered hundreds of miles and faced disease, starvation and violence until finally arriving in Kenya. After several years in a refugee camp in Kenya, Dau was sponsored by the First Presbyterian Church in Skaneateles, N.Y., arriving in the United States in 2001.
Despite the initial culture shock of such things as seeing women driving cars and huge stores filled with food, Dau has succeeded in the U.S. He has been able to bring his sister, mother and fiancée from Sudan, works 60 hours a week as a security guard and received an associate’s degree at Onondago Community College. He is pursuing a degree at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.
Additionally, Dau has begun two non-profit organizations to help Sudanese youth in Syracuse and throughout the United States. His move to the U.S. and early experiences in Sudan are the subject of the film “God Grew Tired of Us,” and he is the author of a memoir by the same name.
This event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Office of Student and Educational Services at (301) 687-4311.
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