Lost Boys of Sudan

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This is about the International Rescue Committee program. For other uses see Lost Boys (disambiguation)

Lost Boys of Sudan is the name of an International Rescue Committee program to resettle refugee boys from Sudan to the United States who were displaced and/or orphaned during the Second Sudanese Civil War (1984-2005, about 2 million killed).

In 2001 about 3800 Lost Boys arrived in the United States, where they are now scattered in about 38 cities, averaging about 100 per city. Halted after 9/11 for security reasons, the program restarted in 2004, but peace talks were underway in Sudan, and so other refugee crises in other countries took priority.

Most of the boys were orphaned or separated from their families when government troops systematically attacked villages in southern Sudan killing many of the inhabitants, most of whom were civilians. The younger boys survived in large numbers because they were away tending herds or were able to escape into the nearby jungles. Orphaned and with no support, they would make epic journeys lasting years across the borders to international relief camps in Ethiopia and Kenya evading thirst, starvation, wild animals, insects, disease, and one of the most bloody wars of the 20th century. Examiners say they are the most badly war-traumatised children ever examined.

When villages were attacked, girls were raped, killed, taken as slaves to the north, or became servants or adopted children for other Sudanese families. As a result, relatively few girls made it to the refugee camps.

[edit] Books and film

There have been a number of books and films about the Lost Boys including:

  • 2006: Dave Eggers, What is the What. A novel based on the story of Valentino Achak Deng.
  • 2006: Christopher Dillon Quinn, God Grew Tired of Us
  • 2005: Bernstein, Judy (ed.), They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky. The true story in their own words of the 14-year journey of Benson Deng, Alephonsion Deng and Benjamin Ajak, now living in the US. book website.
  • 2005: Bixler, Mark. The Lost Boys of Sudan: An American Story of the Refugee Experience book website.
  • 2005: Hecht, Joan. The Journey of the Lost Boys. ISBN 0-9763875-0-6 book website
  • 2004: The 7th Heaven episode "Lost and Found" (season 8, first aired May 3, 2004), depicted two "Lost Boys" from Sudan.
  • 2003: Lost Boys of Sudan. Directed/Produced by Megan Mylan and Jon Shenk; Executive Producer, Frances Reid; 2003; cinematographer, Jon Shenk; VHS/DVD, color, 87 minutes. Subtitled in English. Distributed by Actual Films and Principe Productions.
  • 2003: A Great Wonder: Lost Children of Sudan Resettling in America. Produced by Kim Shelton and Leigh Kimball. Directed by Kim Shelton; 2003; camera, Leigh Kimball; VHS/DVD, color, 61 minutes. Subtitled in English. Distributed by Bullfrog Films.

[edit] External links

Lost Boys of Sudan

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