Presentation by Carl Wilkens: “I’m Not Leaving!": Stories of Hope and Healing from the One American Who Stayed Through the Rwandan Genocide

Fri, 04/19/2013 - 12:00pm - 1:00pm
Room 2, Sabin Hall
As a humanitarian aid worker, Carl Wilkens moved his young family to Rwanda in the spring of 1990. When the genocide that eventually took more 800,000 lives was launched in April 1994, Carl refused to leave, even when urged to do so by close friends, his church and the United States government. Thousands of expatriates were evacuated, and the United Nations pulled out most of its troops. Carl was the only American to remain in the capitol city of Kigali. Venturing out each day into streets crackling with mortars and gunfire, he worked his way through roadblocks of angry, bloodstained soldiers and civilians armed with machetes and assault rifles in order to bring food, water and medicine to groups of orphans trapped around the city. His actions saved the lives of hundreds. For nine years now, Carl has been speaking in schools on nearly every continent about his experiences in Rwanda and how to build bridges with “the other.”