Abdul is a Muslim, one of the leaders in the PEP process. Joseph (our driver) had challenged him through some role play – a common tool used as part of the PEP process.
His parents had chosen his wife, whom he divorced from in the middle of the LRA insurgency, so he decided to join the army – but this was not well paid – he needed money for himself, his mother, and the children he’d had with his wife. He still desired another wife so he left Aruiw… starting with 3 bags of peanuts, he managed to turn them into 9 bags of peanuts (not entirely sure when this was).
When he met the woman who was to be his new wife, he had to be open that he had another family to support, and not enough for a dowry – not even an egg, but promised that if they got married, they would work together to solve things. The father had a plan to sell his animals to buy a plot, so he agreed to purchase two of the cows, with a further one from a government programme, whilst he lived with the in-laws-to-be. Some of the family weren’t happy with this, but they managed like this for 3 months.
At this time he came to a PEP meeting, and started to think how can he make more use of what he has, cleared his land including pasture for a goat. He is now married and saved enough to send his wife to tailoring school, so she can contribute more to family income. He wants to make a house, and plans to use the anthills to make bricks.
He has been elected chairman of the PTA, is choosing to live by example, and also works with the reconciliation committee – formerly he couldn’t work with Christians who were fearful of Muslims – but they have emphasized that this is not about religion, it’s about development.
Abdul continues to seek transformation, he now has more than one (ripped) shirt, has no need to walk as much, although he has suffered persecution from other Muslims who don’t understand the work he is doing, but he has sought to share with them verses from the Koran which focus on unity.
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014; second edition in process) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.