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Plight of abducted children inspires Global Night Commute

In an internationally advertised event, thousands of people will gather and bed down for night at designated locations on April 29 to draw attention to the plight of Northern Ugandan children and the longest running civil war in Africa.

Global Night Commute organized by the Invisible Children Inc. organization is hoping to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis, which has displaced over 1.7 million people.

Hundreds of people are expected to gather at 7 P.M. at North Pointe Community Church in Fresno. The event will last through the night to 7 A.M. on April 30. Those who gather hope to draw attention to the nightly commute of children who fear abduction by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Organizers hope to draw attention to this war and the U.S. government to act.

According to local organizer, Rob Manley, pastor at North Pointe, the Global Night event will kick-off with a showing of The Invisible Children on April 28. Manley predicts 500-1000 people to participate in the event.

“The Invisible Children Global Night Commute symbolizes basically everything that I stand for,” Manley said. “By getting involved we are opening our eyes to an unseen war. I don’t think anyone in the States can or does understand what those kids go through.”

Those who attend will be asked to write letters asking President George Bush to press the United Nations to end the conflict and protect the citizens of Northern Uganda. Secondly they will ask that adequate humanitarian assistance be given to the Invisible Children in the displaced campus. About 130 people die every day as a result of the violence.

“I think people should get involved simply because they can,” Manley said. “So much depends on such a simple decision of coming. As Americans we like things the way we like it and don’t like to go out of our comfort zone. But this is such an easy thing to get involved in; all you have to do is show up for one night. Every person makes a difference in helping to end this war.”

The unseen war and the kidnapping of children for that war has been exposed to the general public through the documentary film, The Invisible Children (Faces for the Invisible Children, April 1). According to the film and organizers, tens of thousands of children nightly commute to escape abduction by roving bands of guerillas. The children flee their homes each evening only to return the next morning.

“We can help these kids simply by comming to the Global Night Commute,” Manley said. “If this was your brother, sister, mother, father or friend being abducted, you would cry out for help. How could you not do the same for these kids?”

The Oprah Winfrey Show promoted the Global Night Commute on April 26 by showing how far the organizers have come in promoting their cause since they visited campus on March 21 this year.

Besides writing letters to the President and elected Senators, those who gather will also create an art project with paint or color crayons. The project will be a response to 1) What does America stand for? 2) What does Global Night Commute mean to you? 3) How can you change the world 4) What is your story? Why do you care?

The art projects from 130 participating cities across the country will be compiled into a book and sold online and sent to government officials and other influential individuals.

The North Pointe film preview showing is for those who may still be interested in the Global Night Commute but want to find out more information first. Manley can be contacted at 559-274-8699.

For more information or to sign up for the event go online to www.invisiblechildren.com. North Pointe Church is south of Herndon on Milburn in Fresno.

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