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My 10th Grade English Class is Raising Money to Send a Victim of Armed Conflict to Graduate School

That is when he realized that a pen was the most powerful weapon.

Despite the lack of educational opportunities, Garang joined the Catholic Diocese of Torit (C-DOT), and The Carter Center-South Sudan Guinea Worm Eradication Program (TCC-SSGWEP) a few years ago. Here, Garang helped eradicate Guinea Worm, and found his passion for helping people. To do so, in 2012, Garang went back to school to earn his undergraduate degree in Sustainable Human Development. This allowed him to work on projects in food security and integrated peace-building projects. However, with the current situation in South Sudan, Garang does not have the education and research to continue developing communities at the level he wishes.

Garang has been accepted to study at Emory University in their Developmental Practices Program. With a Master’s degree in Development Practices, Garang will be at the highest pedestal of resources, education, and experience. From Emory’s undergraduate program in South Sudan, Garang has found that Emory is committed to working in the most deserted areas — not for money, but the actual improvement of communities. After his graduation, he will move back to South Sudan to help his country.

My name is Wayden Ay and I am a senior at Haddonfield Memorial High School. While I have never met Garang in person, I videochatted with him in my 10th grade English class. When Garang spoke, the room could feel the ambition he possessed. Moreover, he was just like everyone else in the room; he had a goal and was using education to achieve it.

As a student yourself, didn’t you have a major and study to get your degree? He is doing the same, except from across the ocean in a war divided country, with very little money and educational opportunity.

Garang changed my life. He opened my eyes to the cruel realities of the world. Yet, he also showed me that you could be in the worst situation, with war-raging right outside door, and still find a way through education and determination to make a difference.

Garang needs your help to afford to study at Emory University. So far, my class has raised $44,060! We need $49,862 to get Garang to Emory.


CLICK HERE to listen to Haddonfield Memorial High School students read Garang Buk Buk’s personal statement.

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