Fundraisers and donors from around the world participated in #zeroLRA and raised an incredible $1,025,000 to fund lifesaving programs for victims of Joseph Kony’s atrocities. Whether you donated $20 or raised $20,000, we are forever grateful, because fundraising isn’t easy (we know).
Where we ended up:
We started the campaign with an initial goal of $3 million that would allow us to operate and expand our successful programs in the LRA-affected region. Mid-campaign we re-calibrated the goal to $1.6 million, which is the literal cost to operate our current programs.
We wanted to hit $3M
We needed to hit $1.6M
We raised $1M
Because we didn’t hit either goal, we will not be able to sustain all of our existing efforts at full capacity. We wanted to share the cuts with you specifically, as we know many of you care deeply for each of the programs we operate with your support. Read on to see which programs we can fund and how these funding decisions were made.
What we have to scale back in 2014
+ We are not awarding any new scholarships this year
+ We can no longer operate Mend at full capacity
+ We cannot fund the smooth transition (reintegration) of former child soldiers into their communities in Democratic Republic of Congo
+ We cannot help financially support the small, community-based nonprofits in Central African Republic that help LRA victims get reintegrated into their communities through counseling, skills training, and education
+ We will not be able to build an FM radio station in CAR to broadcast “come home” messages to LRA groups that have never seen or heard the message that their families miss them and want them to come home.
+ We have already reduced our staff in Africa and the U.S. by a third
What we plan to do in 2014
These are a few of the essential projects we can continue funding in 2014, thanks to your donations and fundraising efforts:
+ We will maintain operations of the existing Early Warning Radio Network, connecting over 70 communities to updates and alerts about LRA activity
+ We will continue “come home” messaging projects, including flier drops and radio broadcasts
+ We will continue supporting a family tracing team to help the children who were abducted as many as 27 years ago find their families
+ We will continue to fund the World Vision Rehabilitation Center in northern Uganda
+ We will help Ugandans who have recently escaped from the LRA make a smooth transition (reintegration) home
What factors were considered in making these funding decisions
+ We made decisions based on how much was fundraised last year and how much we project to fundraise this year
+ We prioritized allocating money to programs that protect at risk communities and assist in the escape and surrender of the child soldiers currently in Kony’s army
+ We have prioritized programs protecting people from immediate violence, even as we recognize that rehabilitation and reintegration programs are critical to the region’s long term success
+ We have chosen to operate programs where we can have the greatest impact with limited funds. A program’s cost is largely dictated by its location. Remote regions lack the infrastructure, Invisible Children staff, and reliable partners that all play a part in how much a program costs.
We will continue to fight to see the communities protected and lives rebuilt, and hope that 2014 will be the year we finally see Kony and his top commanders brought to justice. You make this work possible when you contribute time, talent, or money. The work literally cannot happen without your support. We’re not done yet, and we hope you aren’t either.
You probably have some questions. Talk to us. Email [email protected] to submit your questions, and we will answer them all at once some time in the coming week.