Join us for our Veggie Grill fundraiser this Sunday, January 30th

Hi everyone,

“Sweetheart Fries”, “All Hail Kale”, “Bali Bliss Burger”, “Bean Me Up Chili”… What do these names have in common?  They are some of our favorite culinary delights at the Veggie Grill.  In addition to having a sense of humor, the people behind the restaurant are also quite generous.

This Sunday January 30th, the Veggie Grill near UCI has made us the beneficiary of a fundraiser. All you have to do is mention “Orange County for Darfur”, “Living Ubuntu”, or “I’m here for the fundraiser thingy…” when you order, and we will get 50% of the total! Now that is a pretty cool deal.

Veggie Grill near UCI (all day Sunday)
4213 Campus Dr
Irvine, CA 92612

So, if you like good healthy food (and even if you don’t), we hope you will get together with friends and family this Sunday.  Come bring them to the Veggie Grill.  Or if you’d like to hang out with us, we’ll be there at 4:30p.

See you Sunday :)

Barbara & Anshul
“Comfort food never felt so good”
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org

PS:  Registration for Tarra’s workshop in February on busyness and overwhelm is now open.

Living Ubuntu Veggie Grill Fundraiser

First 2011 meeting for OC for Darfur is this Tuesday, January 4th

Hi everyone,

Well, the new year is already here.  As much as a bit of residual denial about that persists, OC for Darfur has a lot in the planning stage.  We welcome the chance to re-engage with all of you and keep things moving forward.  We will resume our every other Tuesday meeting schedule beginning this coming week. The start of a new year is a great time to get more involved, so we would love to have you join us at our first meeting of the year this Tuesday.

Also, as the January 9th Sudanese referendum date draws close, we wanted to make sure you knew about the Satellite Sentinel Project.  Here is a quote from their web site:

“Previously, when mass atrocities occurred in Darfur, the Government of Sudan denied its involvement. Since photographers could not get access, it took years to amass evidence of genocide. But now we can witness in near real-time and put all parties on notice that if they commit war crimes, we will all be watching, and pressuring policymakers to take action.”
The next OC for Darfur meeting is this Tuesday, January 4th at 6:30p. We will meet at Patty’s office in Newport Beach.  Here is the address:
Patty’s office @ 6:30p
2424 SE Bristol Street, Suite 300
Newport Beach, CA  92660

We will discuss:

  • Update on what’s going on in Sudan, Congo and Burma.
  • Conference call with our Sudanese friends from San Diego on Jan 12th.
  • Veggie Grill fundraiser on Sunday, Jan 30th.
  • Screening of On Our Watch in February.
  • The United States and the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Hope to see you on Tuesday!  May we find peace in the New Year.

Barbara & Anshul
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org | blog | facebook

What does lasting peace require?

“There are now almost daily reports of aerial military assaults by Khartoum (which alone among the combatants in Darfur has air assets) on civilian targets, especially in the Jebel Marra region. Every such flight is a violation of Resolution 1591, and yet the Security Council does nothing ….

China must not be allowed to manhandle evidence and intimidate the Security Council and its representatives on Darfur. The Council should vote immediately to publish the findings of its own Panel of Experts on Darfur, and if China vetoes the move, then it is the obligation of other members of the Council to make the document public—and much more importantly, to act forcefully. “

– Eric Reeves, Arming Khartoum: China’s complicity in the Darfur genocide (link)

Hi everyone,

Finding Peace: When security comes at too high a price (Saturday, Oct 30 2010)

Finding Peace: When security comes at too high a price (Saturday, Oct 30 2010)

We are huge fans of Eric Reeves.  He and many others have been staunch advocates for the Sudanese who’ve suffered terribly for many years now.  Time and time again there have been numerous prescriptions for Sudan.  Omar Bashir needs to be held accountable.  China needs to stop supporting the genocidal government of Sudan.  The United States must do more to aid those who suffer. We know what needs to happen to get to peace.  Yet, rarely do we hear how to go about doing this.  The path seems cloudy and riddled with doubt and skepticism.  Pure intellectual prescriptions are not enough.  At the heart of every successful human endeavor lies a relationship that is based on mutual respect and trust.  Do we have that at the international level?  Does China really trust the United States?  Have our actions and behavior allowed for such trust to develop?

It’s times like these we need to grieve.  Grieving brings us back into the reality of this moment.  The challenges we face are immense, yet our leaders seem extremely ill equipped to deal with them.  We rarely address the root causes of problems.  It’s been 7+ years since the Bashir government launched their genocidal campaign against the people of Darfur.  Yes, they signed a peace deal with the South in 2005.  For a while there was less violence and chaos.  But did this sow the seeds for lasting peace?  Has the Bashir government genuinely changed their ways?  Will they allow the Southern Sudanese to secede?  Is the south capable of standing on its own?

To better answer these questions, we are in the midst of planning a discussion with our Sudanese friends from San Diego.  We’ll be holding it at St. Mark Presbyterian in Newport Beach on Saturday, Nov 13th.  Save the date!  More details coming shortly.

One of our goals in Living Ubuntu has been to explore and address the root causes of conflict and war engulfing our world today.  We need to start by acknowledging that there are significant wounds on both sides of any issue.  Superficial remedies, prescriptions, peace deals on paper do nothing to address these deeply buried wounds and will not help bring about lasting peace and reconciliation.  We hope you will join us next Saturday, October 30th in San Diego for — Finding Peace: When security comes at too high a price. Early discounted registration ($40) for this workshop ends this Saturday. Please make our lives easier and register online.  All details are on the website.

Warmly,

Barbara & Anshul
Living Ubuntu
livingubuntu.org | blog

“The willingness to stop and be present leads to seeing and relating to circumstances and events with more clarity and directness.  Out of this directness seems to emerge deeper understanding or insight into the life unfolding within and before us.  Such insight allows us the possibility of choosing responses most called for by the situation rather than those reactively driven by fear, habit, or long-standing training.”

– Saki Santorelli

Wrap-up from our screening of The Greatest Silence

Hi everyone,

60 Minutes on Congo

60 Minutes piece on Dr. Denis Mukewege and the Panzi Hospital. Watch it.

We had a really good turnout at the screening of The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo this past Sunday.  All of us were pleasantly surprised by the money raised — $358!  These donations will be split evenly between The Panzi Foundation and OC for Darfur.  We are extremely grateful for the generosity of everyone who was able to attend.

If you’d still like to donate, you can do so on our website.

A number of you asked for more information about ways to help the victims in Congo.  You can find more information about the work of Dr. Denis Mukewege and Panzi Hospital on their website.  Since the minerals in our cell phones, laptops etc. fund the militias who perpetrate the violence, we encourage you to visit the Raise Hope For Congo website and sign the petition to bring accountability into the process.

Beyond the donations and actions we encourage you to take, we are grateful for your participation.  Bearing witness to such horrors is very difficult and puts immense strains on one’s own heart and soul.  Given the scale of these problems, it can feel like doom and despair are the only option.  These difficulties are very real.  Yet it is essential that we have a community of people who can hold their ground in the face of such insurmountable challenges.  We all need to take better care of ourselves, know our limits, know when to back off to recharge versus when to stand up, and support each other in the process.  That is the goal in Living Ubuntu.

Thank you for your continued engagement and support.

With gratitude,

Barbara, Anshul and all of us at
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org | blog | facebook

PS: Our next meeting is this Tuesday, Sep 28th at 6:30p. Hope you can join us!

OC for Darfur meeting is next Tuesday, Sep 14 at 6:30p

Hi everyone,

Screening of The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo on Sep 19th

Screening of The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo on Sep 19th in Costa Mesa, CA

The numbers keep rising. Last week, we were horrified by the numerous articles that reported over 240 women and girls being raped in Eastern Congo in July and August. Earlier this week the United Nations confirmed that the toll has risen to over 500.

The additional sexual attacks, in an area called Uvira and other regions of North and South Kivu, came to light during Khare’s trip. He told council members he learned of 74 cases of sexual violence, including against 21 minors — all girls between the ages of 7 and 15 — and six men, in a village called Miki, in South Kivu. All the women in another village, Kiluma, may have been systematically raped, he said.
Associated Press, Sep 8 2010

Why do we tolerate such impunity and brutal violation of women? Why is the UN, spending over a $1 billion dollars a year and having over 18,000 troops unable to protect the Congolese?

The next OC For Darfur meeting this Tuesday, September 14th at 6:30p. We will meet at Patty’s office in Newport Beach. Here is the address:

Patty’s office @ 6:30p
2424 SE Bristol Street, Suite 300
Newport Beach, CA 92660

We will discuss:

  • Update on what’s going on in Sudan, Congo and Burma.
  • Planning for the screening of The Greatest Silence on Sunday, Sep 19th. All details are below.
  • Potential event on the Sudanese referendum in January.
  • Art exhibit about genocide in April.
  • The United States and the International Criminal Court (ICC).

If you’d like to know more about us and our various activities, please join us at the meeting. We would love to have you participate.

Barbara & Anshul
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org | blog | facebook

OC For Darfur meeting is on Tuesday, August 31 at 6:30p

Hi everyone,

Omar Bashir snubs ICC arrest warrant, visits Kenya

Omar Bashir snubs ICC arrest warrant, visits Kenya

Just yesterday, Sudanese president Omar Al-Bashir visited Kenya to celebrate the country’s new constitution. This was yet another chance to arrest and bring him to justice. Did the United States, Brazil and other major European governments know about this? How will they respond to this clear snub of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the UN Security Council?

The next OC For Darfur meeting this Tuesday, August 31st at 6:30p. We will meet at Patty’s office in Newport Beach. Here is the address:

Patty’s office @ 6:30p
2424 SE Bristol Street, Suite 300
Newport Beach, CA 92660


We will discuss:

  • Update on what’s going on in Sudan, Congo and Burma.
  • Planning for the screening of The Greatest Silence in September.
  • Potential event featuring the Sudanese from San Diego in November.
  • The United States and the International Criminal Court (ICC).

If you’d like to know more about us and our various activities, please join us at the meeting. We would love to have you participate.

Barbara & Anshul
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org | calendar | blog | facebook

The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo

The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo


“Why is this happening? Why use sex in order to humiliate and defeat someone? To threaten someone so they flee their village? Why use sex? This is the monstrosity of the century.”
– Dr. Denis Mukwege, Panzi Hospital

Sunday, September 19 2010
6:30p refreshments
7:00p screening & discussion

Mesa Verde United Methodist Church

1701 W. Baker St
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Cost:
Free

Since 1998 a brutal war has been raging in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Over 5 million people have died. Tens of thousands of women and girls who have been systematically kidnapped, raped, mutilated and tortured by soldiers from both foreign militias and the Congolese army. Why doesn’t the world know about these women? Why do they suffer in silence?

Visit http://livingubuntu.org/events for more information.
Please help us in planning for the event and RSVP on the website.

* * *

OC For Darfur meeting is tomorrow, Tuesday July 20th at 6:30p

Hi everyone,

Obama: Bashir should go to the Hague

Obama: Bashir should go to the Hague

We had a lovely get-together at Barbara’s and Betsy’s house this past Saturday to celebrate the 10th Birthday of the International Criminal Court (ICC). It is quite amazing what this young institution has accomplished in such a short amount of time (see the accomplishments).

Watching The Reckoning brought up many questions. Is the ICC achieving it’s mission of bringing to justice the worst offenders of crimes in the world? Who is responsible for apprehending Bashir now that the court has issued a warrant for his arrest? Even though 111 nations are members of the court, why hasn’t Russia, China and the United States joined? Should the US join?

The next OC For Darfur planning meeting is this Tuesday, July 20th at 6:30p.
We will meet at Patty’s office in Newport Beach. Here is the address:

Patty’s office @ 6:30p
2424 SE Bristol Street, Suite 300
Newport Beach, CA 92660

We will discuss:

  • Update on what’s going on in Sudan, Congo and Burma.
  • Wrap-up from our Birthday Celebration for the ICC.
  • Planning for our meeting with Congressman Ed Royce’s office this week.
  • What should we do for Genocide Prevention Month next April?
  • The United States and the International Criminal Court (ICC).

If you’d like to know more about us and our various activities, please join us at the meeting. We would love to have you participate.

Barbara & Anshul
Orange County for Darfur, a project of Living Ubuntu
ocfordarfur.org | blog | facebook

::: RECENT NEWS :::

U.S. special envoy unhappy about ICC genocide ruling against Sudanese president [read]
Jeffrey Gettleman: Somalia the “most dangerous place in the world.” [more]
Nicholas Kristof: The Security Council Sits on its Hands [more]-
Sudan expels two senior aid officials from Darfur [more]
Congress passes conflict minerals legislation [more]
Elections in Burma (Myanmar) won’t be fair, but they will be significant [more]