Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Story of Fallen Whistles

When you visit the Fallen Whistles website the first things you'll notice are a whistle and a journal, and then as your eyes centers on where to go from there, you'll see the first tab is labeled STORY. In this case, first impressions are everything. 

The Fallen Whistles campaign raises funds and awareness for the travesties happening in the Democratic Republic of Congo by selling whistles. 100% of the funds are used to rehabilitate war-affected children and advocate for their freedom. And by wearing the whistle, you cause people to become curious and are thus given the opportunity to shed light where there is still much darkness.

Symbol of the whistles given to boys too small to carry a gun.

But, why whistles? When one man's African trek eventually led him to the Congo, he experienced tremendous heartache and grief over the cruelties inflicted on the children there. He kept a journal and recorded the details described to him by the children about their kidnappings, the rebel war camp conditions, forced rape and murder, and ultimately, hope despite lost innocence. One story told about the smallest boys, who were given whistles to blow when the enemy approached, broke him when he learned they were used as first-line-of-defense barricades. But it also filled his well of determination to work for change no matter what. 

Falling Whistles founder Sean Carasso (right) stands with the friend who gave him the first whistle.

Fallen Whistles has a tour schedule that looks more like a popular muscian's than an organization working for peace in the Congo, which warms our DRC ApeParel heart. The U.S. is large, in terms of actual land mass and population, and in sharing the same hope for change in the Congo as Fallen Whistles (and many, many other organizations and groups of people around the world) we know that reaching the masses is a crucial element to raising the necessary awareness for that change to happen. One tactic the campaign implements is scheduling unlikely venues for conversations on war-torn Congo, and though unconventional it is where the people are. So, we are proud to say that this year, on November 23rd, a meet, greet and get connected event at the Dapper Style House, a retail store on Morgan Street in downtown Raleigh, was the site of much whistle blowing!

Join us in supporting Fallen Whistles by following their blog!

All pictures courtesy of www.fallingwhistles.com. 

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