In 2013 I met an extraordinary group of individuals, in fact I met a extraordinary culture of people - people who saw beyond themselves, their families and religion. 

That group was called Stand Up. An NGO formed in 1994 in response to the Rwandan Genocide that has since expanded into a multitude of education, health and leadership programs aimed at non-Jewish communities. Their history is rich, their scope wide and the influence deep - thousands of indigenous, refugee and displaced families have benefited from Stand Up's hard work and determination to repair the world. 

With this in mind I knew I had to do something to contribute. 

It so happened that serendipitously that in 2013 they were looking to do a retrospective book on the history of the organisation, as well as interviews with both donors and recipients of Stand Up's work. 

With around 20 interviews over the last 18 months I've had the pleasure of meeting entrepreneurs, refugees, lawyers, activists, artists, priests and some individuals that defy classification. I've been inspired and humbled, laughed and cried through the journey of capturing these stories expertly penned by Deborah Marks. 

The book is due for launch this July with exhibitions planned for Melbourne and Sydney. 

www.standup.org.au

There was no other option but to escape. The new Government came into our village and destroyed everything – our homes, our land were all burnt to the ground. There were thousands of people in our village. Many fled to the mountains during the civil war and hid in caves. My father discovered there was not enough food in the mountains, so he told us to leave. A year later we found out he had been killed. We also lost many uncles. They killed the men and the youths. My brother, sister and mum walked for two days and finally found one of my other brothers. We all travelled together by truck to Khartoum.
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