Juba, South Sudan,
May 2, 2021 —The Gawaar Youth Association in collaboration with the Gawaar Community in Juba held a first-of-its-kind fundraising event on May 1st, 2021 in the capital Juba in respond to devastating floods that have submerged most parts of Ayod county of Jonglei State from July last year and continuing.
According to the Chairperson of the Gawaar Youth Association in Juba, Mr. Emmanuel Gawaar Paul Gatnor, the event which saw attendance from senior government officials that include the Minister of Presidential Affairs, Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, and the Minister of Petroleum, Hon. Puot Kang, was attended by more than two thousands people.
According to the youth leader who organized structured committees and went knocking, door to door, to invite participants, the huge turnout indicates that the communities care for what is affecting one of their own although both the state and national governments have turned a blind eye to the suffering populations in Ayod county and else where.
“This historical event has shown that the Gawaar Community has a great concern on the flooding situation in our hometown. They wholeheartedly came to empathize and give whatever each person has for a sake of our innocent victims of the flood. Our participation has really shown that we care for each other. Gawaar Paul said.
The chairman thanks his community, other communities, dignitaries and the Gawaar Global Community for the strong solidarity shown.
“With great pleasure I am here to congratulate Gawaar Community in Juba, our friends from different communities who came to share with us the day. Thank you all for the solidarity you have shown yesterday at the Freedom Hall.” Mr. Gawaar said.
“Thank you to all invited guests for accepting the invitation from Gawaar Community asking to share the great concern we undergo. Your participation and humbleness has been acknowledged by the Community you help and you will remain our friends indeed. ” He continued.
The Gawaar Youth Association further thanked the invited guests that include the Guest of Honour, Hon. Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, Minister of presidential Affairs; special guest, Hon. Puot Kang Chol, Minister of petroleum; the chief guest, Hon. Thiik Thiik Mayardit, Deputy Mayor of Juba City Council; the patron of the day, Hon. Peter Gatwech Kulang, the undersecretary in the ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management and Hon. Samuel Maker, Minister of Information of Lakes State, among others.
The youth organization also thanks the Gawaar Global Community which is the umbrella that leads Gawaar Community Associations in the five continents.
“I also thank all brothers and sisters who are physically far from us but spiritually with us in supporting and generating the success of this idea, especially the leadership of Gawaar Global Community led by the Chairperson Mr. Deng Elijah. Accept our appreciation” The Youth statement further said.
In a separate statement, the President of the Gawaaar Global Community, Deng Elijah Hon, commended the youth leadership and acknowledged the dignitaries and communities for attending the event and for pledging their contributions in kind.
“Congratulations to Gawaar Youth Association for demonstrating a spectacular leadership. The event that you managed to put together amid COVID-19 lockdowns and all the economic crises paints a beautiful history of what the people are capable of.” Said Deng Elijah, the president of the Gawaar Global Community.
“Thanks to Emmanuel Gawar Paul and his leadership for their persistence and hard work since we introduced this idea in October last year and persuaded the leaders to hold fundraising in response to the ongoing flood in Ayod county.” He continued.
Mr. Elijah called on the community to embrace fundraising as a developmental tool, reiterating that it should always be the first resort as demonstrated by the Gawaar Global Community for years.
“Fundraising has been a powerful tool for community development for centuries and there is no reason why it should not be utilized.” Deng said.
Responding on social media, Gawaar intellectuals and leaders thank the organizing committees, Gawaar youth leadership and the Gawaar Global Community for making the event successful.
“It was an incredible event that shall live in our memories. The organizing team, led by Mr. Gawaar Paul Gatnor and you, people in the diaspora, demonstrated tremendous leadership for it to become a reality, Congratulations to you all! I wholeheartedly thank and congratulate all the dignitaries who took their time to join us and pledged huge contributions in support of our people, may God bless them abundantly!” Said Martin Gatluak Michael, the Executive Director in the Ministry of Petroleum.
“I’m writing this message on behalf of Ayod Flood Response Initiative (AFRI) today to thank you for all the support that you have extended to us (Gawaar) today during the Fundraising event at Freedom Hall.. We really appreciate everybody how you have always been so friendly to the Gawaar Community” Said Ter Manyang Gatwech, a member of organizing committee and activist.
“Am very thankful to our both the Organizing Committee and the Steering body of the Flood Response Initiative (AFRI) for their tremendous and the greatest job well done yesterday, please guys let’s continue to maintain the spirit of standing in solidarity for the help of our flood victims in Ayod County.” Said Tayien Koang Kuor, a member of the Steering Committee.
Ayod county is one of the counties that are severely affected by flood in Jonglei State and have so far received no assistance from the state or national government.
Attempts by the humanitarian organizations to rescue the victims or to supply them with basic needs have proven difficult.
The flood, which was expected to dry up during the dry season earlier this year, is currently increasing and is expected to devastate even more this year.
Hundreds of thousands of animals have died and hundred of thousands of people have been displaced, and the whole county remains at risk of famine, disease outbreak and more displacement.
Want to donate online? Check out: Support Ayod Flood Victims