2017 desmond tutu fellowship awarded to emmanuel jal
Author, musician, performer and peace ambassador Emmanuel Jal has been awarded the 2017 Desmond Tutu Reconciliation Fellowship.
The Fellowship, which promotes reconciliation by bringing global support to individuals engaged in local projects, recognises Emmanuel’s global work in reconciliation as a displaced person from South Sudan.
An established and accomplished musician and performer, Emmanuel is the architect of the We Want Peace campaign which helped attract international attention to the suffering in South Sudan through the 2011 independence process.
Emmanuel also founded Gua Africa, his own charity, which sponsors South Sudanese refugees through a Survivors of War program and promotes education in Africa through academic sponsorship.
Emmanuel’s peace activism and achievements have been recognised by the United Nations as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum; and he has addressed the US Congress on peace and reconciliation, drawing on his personal experiences and background.
The 2008 documentary Warchild, is based on Emmanuel’s life and his autobiography, War Child: A Child Soldier's Story, was published in the same year. It documents a life overcoming adversity as a child soldier in Southern Sudan, and shares Emmanuel’s remarkable ability to turn hatred and bitterness into a life of peace.
Announcing the award, Fellowship Chairman Dr Charles Lane said Emmanuel had used his life experience to promote peace and reconciliation through his music, activism and charity.
"Emmanuel Jal continues to make an enormous contribution to global reconciliation and peace through his art, the education programs he supports and his leadership among so many young displaced and often disengaged people", Dr Lane said.
‘His contribution stood out among a competitive global field of impressive nominees, who are all working tirelessly to make our world a better, more peaceful and compassionate place".
Emmanuel will be in Australia to receive his Desmond Tutu Reconciliation Fellowship later in 2017.