Case history of Jacob
Jacob is a Sudanese refugee child who fled Sudan without his family. After joining up with other Sudanese boys who were also without parents, he walked from southern Sudan, across thousands of miles of barren land, to the safety of a refugee camp in north-west Kenya.
Questions designed to stir the children's imagination and to sensitise them to Jacob's situation.
Suggested "set the scene" questions can be found in the accompanying lesson plan.
The teacher reads aloud Jacob's story. (If possible, the photo of the Sudanese boys trekking their way to safety should be downloaded from this website, and be on display).
Students answer the comprehension questions on the accompanying Activity Sheet: Jacob's Story.
Thousands of boys roamed between Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya after fleeing from the fighting in southern Sudan. Gradually they met up and formed into large groups. Some stayed on the road for years crossing thousands of miles of barren land.
"Jacob's Story" from Refugee Children (Geneva, UNHCR, 1993), pp. 14-16.
Activity Sheet: Jacob's Story
Suggested reading for teachers
Christiane Berthiaume, "Alone in the world" (Refugees no. 95, 1994).
Sybella Wilkes, "One day we had to run!" (London, Evans Brothers, 1994), p. 12-19
UNHCR, The State of the World's Refugees 1995: In Search of Solutions [PDF, 42pp., 1.0Mb] (Oxford, OUP, 1995), p. 28
Starting a new life: Elijah Jok surfing the internet with his American teacher (from Refugees no. 122, 2001, p. 23).
The 'Lost Boys of Sudan' are now adults. They spent much of their childhood and teenage years in refugee camps in northern Kenya. Many have been resettled in various countries. Articles on the 'Lost Boys' include Judith Kumin,
"The Long March [PDF, 2pp., 107Kb]" (Refugees no. 122, 2001, pp. 12-13), Panos Moumtzis, "Murder, flight...and pizza [PDF, 3pp., 185Kb]" (Refugees no. 122, 2001, pp. 22-24)
There were also the 'Lost Girls of Sudan' who were 'invisible' to humanitarian and media attention for a long time. Refer to Emmanuel Nyabera "Man-eating lions, crocodiles, famine..." (Refugees no. 126, 2002, pp. 8-10), and to the lesson plan for 15-18 year olds in Civic Education on Refugee Women.