Kony 2012

Jack Simpson

Head of Marketing and Communications

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This week the words on everyone’s lips are ‘Kony 2012.’ If you haven’t heard about it, you need to.

Kony 2012 is a campaign set up by non-profit group Invisible Children. Their aim is to raise awareness of Joseph Kony; a man who has terrorised villagers in at least four central African countries, particularly Uganda, for nearly two decades.

This week Invisible Children released a video surrounding their campaign to ‘make Kony famous.’ Not to celebrate him but to bring about his arrest and uphold international justice. They plan to use the power of social media to bring together our global community and realise that we as individuals can make an impact to stop Joseph Kony. The charity, like us here at Web Applications wants to make Kony a household name and bring his crimes to light.

The video has attracted over 50 million hits on YouTube already and shows no signs of slowing down. It depicts how Kony, as head of the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda, kidnaps children. Boys are forced to become child soldiers, while girls are turned into sex slaves. His forces are thought to be responsible for killing and mutilating tens of thousands of people. They brainwash children and force them to kill their parents and other villagers so they have no homes to go back to. Invisible Children said, “The LRA has been active in Uganda for nearly 20 years, displacing 1.7 million people and abducting at least 30,000 children.” The video has become an instant viral hit and the hash tag #stopkony has previously appeared on Twitter’s top 10 worldwide trends.

On 20th April 2012 Invisible Children are encouraging people at sundown to put up posters, flyers and stickers featuring Joseph Kony all over city centres through the night. This will be happening in cities all over the world with the aim to make Kony famous, so people know who he is and what he is doing; so he can be stopped.

As a company, we’re getting fully behind the campaign; it’s a cause we are passionate about. From 2001 to 2004 our Chief Executive Craig Dean lived in Uganda and saw first-hand the devastation Joseph Kony caused to the lives of the people who lived there. When he visited Gulu he saw the school projects being set up by various charities. Of this he commented: ‘I saw children cramming themselves into these halls in the evening, hiding in fear. Some would walk over ten miles to get to the villages, sleeping in any open doorway to avoid the raids Kony carried out at night.’

As a business we want to see Kony stopped, arrested and brought to justice.

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