Students work to shine light on Invisible Children

Catherine Boudreau

The students at Quinnipiac University have never been ones to shy away from uniting to support a good cause, and their most recent venture is no exception.

A kickoff meeting and documentary screening was held on Jan. 26 in Buckman Theater to spread the word about a new organization coming to Quinnipiac. Invisible Children is a non-profit organization devoted to raising funds and spreading awareness about the war in Uganda and focuses primarily on the children and families affected by the war.

Quinnipiac students Melinda DeLucia, Karun Karri, Jamie Hill, Megan De Vizio and Sam Crocker have come together to support this charity-based international organization and bring it to Quinnipiac.

Currently the Invisible Children club is a branch off of the Albert Schweitzer Institute. David Ives, a professor at Quinnipiac and executive director of the Institute, is the group’s faculty advisor. The club is still in the process of becoming recognized by the University and should be in full swing by next semester. In the meantime, there is a lot of work to be done.

For the past 23 years, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a violent rebel-based militia led by Joseph Kony, and the Government of Uganda have been fighting a war that has displaced and affected millions of people. LRA practices include abducting children that have been separated from their families and training them into soldiers. These brainwashed children are forced to become soldiers for the rebel army and grow up killing other children because they know nothing else. Sadly, more than 90 percent of the LRA’s troops consist of soldiers who were captured as children.

“After Professor Ives showed us the Invisible Children documentary in class last semester I knew this was an organization I truly believed in,” DeLucia said. “The organization makes you want to get involved, not feel obligated to.”
The provisional QU Invisible Children’s goal is to recruit members and spread awareness about the atrocities being committed in Uganda, especially to the innocent children. The club’s plans include signing up for the “Schools for Schools” program, which aids in the building and rebuilding of Ugandan schools. The club is also launching a campus-wide book drive that benefits literacy programs and schools in affected war-torn areas through book donations. This is the second time this book drive has been done on this campus.

Invisible Children, Inc. has lifted the copyright off of its merchandise which will enable the group here at Quinnipiac to sell T-shirts and bracelets to raise money for this cause as well.