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Story of the 100th Birthday

When Apr 13, 2010
from 07:00 PM to 08:00 PM
Where Decorah Public Library
Contact Name
Contact Phone 563-382-3717
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Luther College senior Christine Meling will present a free program entitled “The Story of the 100th Birthday” at 7 p.m. Tuesday April 13 on the 2nd floor of the Decorah Public Library.


The presentation will reveal how a 100th birthday wish helped bring about the construction of a kindergarten for school children in the Yari village of Southern Sudan. Pictures included in the presentation portray Yari, a village devastated by two decades of civil war, school children studying under mango tree shadows, and how the 100th birthday wish lead to the creation of moderate classrooms that protect children from elements of weather. Special attention will be given to children, advocacy for social justice in war torn areas, and the rhythm in mobilizing rural communities.


Meling, a native of Sudan, grew up in Uganda after her family was displaced by the civil war. She attended primary education at a refugee camp and finished her secondary education at Ediofe girls’ SS, in Arua, Uganda. In 2004, she received a United World Colleges scholarship to attend high school at Red Cross Nordic United World College in Norway. Two years later, Meling was accepted for a college education at Luther College, where she has studied health and social work.

While at Luther College, Meling applied for and received $10,000 from the Davis Projects for Peace Foundation to build Yari kindergarten school in summer 2008. In 2009, she was awarded the Vincent L. Hawkinson Foundation for Peace and Justice Award for her continued efforts to promote education in a community devastated by over two decades of civil war. Meling has presented her story to various groups and churches, including at the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Forum at Augsburg College.

Meling is currently working on a 2010 commitment to action called “Sewing for the Next Generation.” The project will involve collaborating with the community to set up a uniform-making initiative to offer training to women that will help them acquire both management and sewing skills. The uniforms will then be supplied to rural schools.

Meling’s program is part of National Library Week 2010: “Communities Thrive @ Your Library.” Call 563-382-3717 or email for more information.


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