The long rains have begun in Sudan's Nuba mountains. For the next few months, the Nuba people will be cut off from almost all outside help. The few "open roads" into this embattled area are now swamps, prohibiting all but the most robust vehicles from getting through.
This means that regular food, medicine and other shipments brought in during the dry season must hold out until the roads open again-- hopefully in November. This is the time of the "long wait," where the people generally hunker down until the land dries again.
The good news is that this bad weather prevents regular movement by enemy ground forces. The bad news is that the weather doesn't prevent the Antonov bombers and MiG fighters from continuing their campaign of terror from the skies.
The rain brings with it the time for planting and harvesting. And since food is a weapon in Khartoum's war of ethnic cleansing in the Nuba, the Sudan Air Force will be busy bombing fields and market places to scare people back into the mountains and caves where they live for protection.
So what will PPF be doing in the Nuba during the "long wait?" Certainly not waiting. Our emergency safe water borehole repair teams continue to work in the frontline areas to ensure people have access to clean water. During the rainy season, waterborne illnesses dramatically increase, so it's important to ensure access to clean wells. We made certain to deliver spare parts and fuel to the region before the rains shut us out, so the work will progress and, God willing, we'll continue to receive reports of their success.
Our team also delivered many containers of non-food relief items like blankets, mosquito nets, tarps, cooking supplies, and Bibles for those displaced from their homes. The distribution of these items will continue during the rainy season and be overseen by a network of 100 pastors of local churches in the communities we serve.
Keep in mind that all the activities described above are highly illegal according to the Islamist government in Sudan.
The NCP-led government, formerly known as the National Islamic Front, treats any humanitarian assistance to "rebel insurgent areas" as a treasonous act. As reported in a previous Africa Messenger, any person caught entering the Nuba with more than 10 tablets of medication can be executed for treason.
For this reason, your prayers for the safety of all our team members are greatly appreciated! Your Active Compassion makes this ministry to the persecuted possible. PPF receives no government funding. For the last 17 years, everything we've accomplished has been through the generous hearts of individuals, churches, businesses, and other organizations in partnership together.
The war in Sudan's Nuba mountains has been called "the worst atrocity you've never heard of." But you have heard, and you have responded. Your love shines a light into dark places and reminds our Nuba brethren that they are not forgotten-- and never alone.