The original goal of Cover the Night, as introduced in the viral KONY 2012 video, was to make Joseph Kony famous. That happened in a matter of days thanks to millions of people around the world who shared the KONY 2012 films. The event has expanded into a global day of action, embodied by the idea that our liberty is bound together and that the human connection extends around the globe, but starts across the street.
Already this week, thousands of Kony 2012 supporters have contacted the African Union, the United Nations, global leaders, and heads of state, asking them to support international efforts to end LRA violence.
And today, April 20, 2012, people all around the world will be serving their local communities and promoting justice for Joseph Kony in creative and constructive ways.
Cover the Night events kicked off last weekend in the now peaceful Gulu, Uganda, where Joseph Kony’s crimes began more than 26 years ago. There was also an advocacy event held in Dungu, DR Congo, where the LRA continues to commit its horrific crimes. People from a spectrum of cultural and political backgrounds showed up to declare united support for the efforts to end LRA violence in DR Congo, the Central African Republic (CAR), and South Sudan. The event–complete with music, a screening of KONY 2012, a soccer match, and a peace march–set the tone for Cover the Night activities around the world. Respectful, collaborative, and promoting international justice.
Civil society leaders from DR Congo and CAR came together this week in Dungu, DRC, and released this joint statement, Call for Solidarity with the Populations of Central Africa, that can be viewed in full at Human Rights Watch.
The civil society leaders wrote, “We call on the international community to engage, in line with international principles, to assist persons at risk, protect civilians, disband the LRA, and reunite our communities…We deplore the fact that some governments currently minimize the LRA problem, while others are indifferent to it, and still others even refuse to cooperate to put an end to the LRA phenomenon and movement….Collaborate with us, and together we can build a lasting peace.”
All around the world, young people are stepping up and serving their local communities while advocating for international justice. Apart from widespread awareness and the unprecedented media coverage, we’ve already seen an incredible response from our leaders, including 107 cosponsors on a newly introduced bi-partisan resolution in Congress that calls for robust U.S. support for regional efforts to protect communities and help bring Joseph Kony to justice. There has also been a debate in the UK House of Lords, a press statement from the EU expressing support for international efforts, and heightened activity and visibility on UN and AU efforts to protect civilians and stop the LRA threat.
Our liberty is bound together.