SALISBURY, MD---Iraq. Afghanistan. Uganda. All are centers of conflict, but only two frequently make the nightly news.
Former United Nations Undersecretary of Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland has called the war in Uganda the “biggest forgotten, neglected humanitarian emergency in the world today.” Dr. Dean Ravizza can’t forget, however. He has seen too much.
A UN volunteer in Africa, the Salisbury University health, physical education and human performance faculty member shares his experiences with the lecture “At Play in the Fields of Young Soldiers: A Case of Northern Uganda” 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 11, in Holloway Hall Auditorium.
Ravizza, who has worked in Northern Uganda since 2005 as part of the UN Sport for Development and Peace Program, speaks about the children affected by the conflict between the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and the Ugandan government. During this conflict, which has now entered its third decade, the LRA has abducted tens of thousands of children, inducting them into the rebel army and turning them against their families and communities.
Ravizza works with former child soldiers at a child reception center operated by the Gulu Support the Children Organization (GUSCO). He also works with staff to develop programs using sports as a way to reintegrate formerly abducted Ugandan children back into their communities. He also helped develop Project HEALS, a community-based organization that uses expressive activities like sports, music and dance to foster psychosocial development of war-affected children and youth.
Sponsored by the Office of Cultural Affairs, his talk is free and the public is invited. For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at www.salisbury.edu.