Phenomenal Event at the Sapphire Room April 5th, 2014!!

A World Music Celebration for poet Fidel Nshombo

April 5th, 2014 – 7:00pm to 9:30pm

Featuring Tambalka and The Afrosonics

For Tickets, CLICK HERE
One hundred percent of ticket sales will be used to help reunite our friend, poet Fidel Nshombo, with his family.
Join us in a World Music Celebration to support our friend, poet Fidel Nshombo, in his efforts to bring his parents to the American Continent from Africa. Fidel’s family was separated in the first Congo war (read his story here boisetobukavu.org/ ). Fidel has worked tirelessly to help his family and others, and to educate and enlighten all of us with his poetry, writing, speaking, and his work as a Northwest Representative for The United Nations Refugee Congress. To know Fidel is to be changed – his message opens our eyes and changes our world for the better. This is our chance to support and celebrate Fidel and his work for our local community and for the world community.

Doors to The Sapphire Room will open at 6pm, with appetizers, dinner, and drinks available. The show will begin at 7pm with Tambalka, after which Fidel will treat us to his original poetry. The evening will finish with Dayo Ayodele and The Afrosonics. This promises to be an amazing night!

One hundred percent of ticket sales for this concert will be given to boisetobukavu.org to help reunite Fidel’s family.
https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn2/t1/988798_279175112229796_1328608084_n.jpg
TAMBALKA  tambalka.com
Tambalka presents an intriguing blend of Rumba, Latin, Gypsy, and Mediterranean!

AFROSONOCS  facebook.com/AFROSONICS
Since music is the universal language, it’s only fitting that AFROSONICS  has chosen this medium to bring people with diverse musical influences together in the creation of an original music style. Audiences experience new vibes through a fusion of guitars, drums, percussion, keyboards, electronic soundscapes, vocals, dance and chants. Although most of the rhythms are of African and American origin, it’s tough to put a label on their sound. Afrosonics incorporates music from all over the world and the root of each member intermingles to create something both classic and unique.

Fidel’s Latest Poem

Hang On

Now y’all are asking me about the journey that my family and I took to escape

But how much do you value my experience?

Because I am not a victim here and I do not need your pity whatever that may coast for I am a criminal, a criminal, an innocent criminal.

In any war there’s always been a survivor whose story is ignored and forsaken.

Like the miseries of the Congo that’s ignored in-order for you and I can text and play angry birds.

We been deprived of school but not education,

We been denied a voice but not the memory

For we remember, every single evil that was done to us like it was yesterday.

I have always said that what you told is not what’s happening,

It’s more serious than a bloody civil war.

Ooh! Yeah!

But you can’t believe me right!

Because you have a PhD and I am just a little boy from Africa,

An uneducated boy at that!

Hey! I saw what happened okay!

It was not a civil war, it was an invasion.

It was not 5 million casualty, it was double that.

What you read was a government covers up like in 1994 when they refused to call what was going on in Rwanda “genocide”.

You still want to hear my story right!

But what will you do when you see your reflection in the tear drop of my cousin after he had killed his family under order from the rebels?

Will it make you a better person?

Will it make you appreciate your own life?

Or will it make you learn more, and encourage you people to work and make a difference in the lives of those that need it the most?

Remember, I am a witness to an evil that was done to my people,

And your own country may have some of their blood on her hands.

Look at our children!

Most of them have killed!

Yet they are innocent of any crimes,

All of them were ordinary boys and girls before you prioritized minerals over lives,

They became expendable.

Their parents were killed before their own eyes; some were forced to participate in the killings before being abducted.

Our boys and girls have all killed, but yet, they are all innocent of any crime.

Abducted after watching their parents murdered,

Injected with drugs and alcohol,

Thought how to kill and have no mercy over anyone.

Our boys and girls chopped off limbs, hands and breasts while doing many terrible things under order from rebels who are supplying the world with minerals in exchange for guns that are then used to kill more of our people.

Over six million people have been murdered in the Congo, half of them children.

Every time you buy a new cell phone you are financing the killings of children in the Congo.

More people have died in Congo in the last ten years, than any other conflict combine in the last 40 years.

But nobody has heard of it right! Because it’s happening in Africa

I ask you all which sides will you choose? You either with life or war

With refugees or none

When everyone pretend not to see them violated, will you fight for them?

And when the world turn away with them bleeding will you stand by them?

Do you want to be the voice of the voiceless?

Do you want to give them a hand out, hand to hang on, hold on?

Let the world not act but at least they have heard of them.

Tell them positively about refugees you met here today, not like a label,

We have the tendency of labeling victims of attrocities

Like the great and outstanding human that is talking to you today.

I know that there are systems in place that works against refugees,

Trouble, trouble and trouble it seems as though they running out of time.

Thinking tomorrow will bring better days but it passes by.

The system is helping them but barely keeping them alive,

Leading them to next meal and a day closer to death,

I am terrified; I am terrified of lying to the mirror,

Telling myself that I am worthy of respect, but outside there I am looked at as “just a poor refugee, stateless, homeless. “

Africa must be the responsibility of every one, the western nations that are benefiting from its wealth, and the African who are dying calling it home.  If you are the government, act. If you are a people, persuade your government to act or stop benefiting on her misery so that we would not have to tell you these horrible stories again.

So, I am from the Congo where diamonds, gold and col-tan cost lives

I get questions daily, like “why you won’t cry when you tell your story”

I’m the lost son of the Congo; I’ve seen worse.

Tears don’t come because you don’t cry for the dead when you live in graveyard.

I’m an eight year old child staring in fear as my city is burned down to ashes

I was born of refugee parents, but not in the camp, in America,

Regardless of what I achieve I will always be known as a refugee

My soul died in Zimbabwe, shoot down by evil troops who shoot for a living,

I am a ten year old child marching holding a sign when a colleague got shot in the heard.

I am a twelve year old war victim, displaced person, internal refugee at the bottom of society. The strength, intensity I learned during this time paved the next ten years in my life mixed with lonely feelings locked away in my head

I am a 13 year old illegal immigrant, border jumper, crossing deadly Rivers, crawling under bridges to gain illegal access into countries in search of freedom;   these were trips of my life, adventurous

I am a 14 year old asylum seeker, Refugee, struggling for acceptance and equality hearing voices calling you all kind of names that do not define well who I am

Life of refugees is not all that fun, they’ll never let you be who you are

I once heard a man say “Refugees refuse to learn English, huddle together in their own little groups and clans, sponge off the taxpayer, bring their criminal intentions, and other socially unacceptable habits and diseases with them, commit more criminal acts than the natives, don’t and can’t be bothered to fit in to the native way of life, and are a general blot on the landscape.”

I stared at him and shook my head and murmured, Hum, Hum!!!

I am telling you, Life of a refugee is not that fun,

I am a 15 year old high school student, struggling to integrate with native who discriminates bully me out.  People! I don’t care how much education you have, if you are not teaches these children humanity you adding nothing positive to the world.

I am a 30 year old father, husband, citizen of the world. I am a world traveler, multi-lingual, multi-cultural multi-national, and a citizen of the united state of America but my citizenship is only noticed when I open my bedroom dresser and take a look at the certificate.

I am a hard worker, courageous, an outstanding human, an innocent’s criminal that has been left out an orphan by the war you all have neglected in order to text and play angry bird.

I was imprisoned, tortured, deported, racially abused, sexually abused and emotionally abused but I thank God for all that came to shake my life but ended up shaping it for the best.

Life of a refugee is not all that fun, it’ll pop open, exposed you for insults,

It will leave your eyes popping out of their sockets,

It will leave you feeling for water and food I am telling you

It’s a man fifty year old opening fire on a group of twelve year old hell no!

They leave the bodies’ rotted, they leave their cops rotted food for vultures

Tell their mothers, keep that casket open

Let the whole world see that it’s not only burning here in the Congo hell it’s hot where you be.

From the Congo to Sudan, from Iran to Iraqi, Pakistan to Afghanistan

People I am a sacrificial lamb for you, my life is what I am willing to give for it

I challenge you to find a cause that’s worth dying for and live for it.

I am not just a Refugee!!! I am human being.

Going’s On

ImageSince Ruth and I have moved to Wyoming, away from Fidel, it’s not as easy to stay up to date with all Fidel’s goings on.  Of course, even if we were there in Boise with him, it would still be tough because he’s just so active.

I had the pleasure to spend 30 minutes on the phone with him late last week.  He shared all sorts of news with me, some fabulous, some just great, and some less great.  He also made a request that I immediately said I’d honor.

I’ll start with his request.  Unbeknownst to me Fidel has been collecting video’s of poetry readings, speeches and award presentations and has started posting them to YouTube.  He asked if I’d mention them in this website.  After slapping myself on my forehead I said yes.   There is no better way for you to understand who Fidel is than to let you see and hear him for yourself.  The previous post is the video of  Fidel accepting an award from Boise’s Mayor for becoming a US citizen and for his contributions to the refugee community in Boise.   I’ll post some more videos directly in line here in the near future and will setup links to them all very soon.  If you can’t wait – just go to YouTube and search for Fidel N Nshombo.

Maintaining the theme of his contributions to the refugee community, in September, for the second year in a row, Fidel is going to the Annual UNHCR Refugee Congress in Washington DC.  This year, however, he’s going as one of only 9 refugee delegates across the country.  Last year he represented Idaho.  This year he’s been elected to represent the entire Northwest Region.  Having witnessed his ability to articulate the plight of refugees first hand, I’m not surprised that he’s been given this honor, but I sure am proud and happy for him.  When he returns I’m sure he’ll have stories, and more videos, to share.

Of course, Fidel’s principle focus, above his community work, above College, and even above his own personal needs, is working to get his family out of Uganda.  His Mom and Dad have completed the initial phase of the resettlement process but are now being asked to pay $1,500.00 US in order to continue to the next phase.  It is unclear who it is that’s asking for money but it is not the UNHCR.   Unf0rtunately, corruption is relatively common in many countries in Africa and it appears that is what we’re up against.  Refusal to pay will most likely mean, simply, that they don’t leave Uganda.  If you’ve read previous posts you know it’s very difficult for them to get jobs as Congolese refugees living in Uganda, so the money has to come from Fidel.    That’s on top of the money for housing, food and school for the kids.  Net/Net – Fidel and BoiseToBukavu need money.  Please, click on the Donate button, or buy a book, and help us help Fidel raise that money.

Ok – ending on a high note. There’s a huge and happy change in Fidel’s future.  He’s engaged to a beautiful woman whom he’s met in some of his travels over the last couple years.  She’s also a refugee, resettled to Minneapolis, Minnesota, and is from the same village he’s from in Bukavu, Congo.  I’ll wait to get clearance from him before I post anything else but I will say that he’s very excited and happy.

Until next time…..

Fidel with Boise’s Mayor

Fidel is honored by Boise Mayor Dave Bieter for becoming a US Citizen and for his contributions to the Idaho refugee community.

Fidel Publishes New Book of Poetry!

Fidel is published once again with Volume 2 to of his “Route to Peace” poetry series.  In this volume Fidel reflects on the courage, strength and determination it requires to be a refugee.  He sheds light on the atrocities of war, and particularly the brutality women face in war zones.  Fidel is a voice for peace and change and admonishes men who go along with brutal practices in the name of cultural acceptance.  Fidel also reflects on the experience of being separated from family by war.

Please support Fidel’s call to improve the lives of refugees by buying a copy of this book for yourselves and sharing it with others.  If you order through this website on our “Buy Poetry” page, we will automatically send you his latest volume unless you specifically request Volume 1.  Please let us know if you would like both volumes, in which case, you will receive a $5 discount off your order.

Thanks and Enjoy!   

A Local Celebrity Needs YOUR Help!

If you haven’t yet, please go check out this story on the local news.

It’s rather amazing that Fidel Nshombo can garner so much attention and success yet still struggle to make ends meet.  This is the reality of refugee life.  We at Boise to Bukavu Inc. (B2B) are determined that Fidel achieve the American dream of supporting himself and his family.  We need supporters to get through these next 1-2 years where Fidel and our organization are still the sole support of his family of 10 family members in Uganda – six of whom are in school or need to be in school.  We also try to provide funds for Fidel’s windowed sister to keep her 5 kids in school.

Fidel is a national success by any standards other than financial.  He was chosen as Idaho’s delegate to the national conference to address refugee issues in Washington DC this past summer, he will be the keynote speaker to a conference in Chicago in 2 weeks, and yesterday the City of Boise honored Fidel with the Mayor’s Award for his humanitarian service to their community.  It has taken Fidel only 5 years in the U.S. to achieve this sort of recognition.  However, this recognition does not come with financial reward other than an occasional modest speaking fee.   Fidel and B2B still struggle every quarter to cover the minimal expenses of his family (housing, food, medical and school fees) in Africa.   We sell his poetry volume online at this site, but that is a way to share his amazing work with the world, more than a way to raise the type of funds we need.
Truly, what we need most is your tax deductible donation Boise To Bukavu, Inc. so that we can apply 100% of it towards his family’s sustenance.  Can you help us to help the Nshombo family?!   Every little bit helps!  $25 will feed this family for several days!  No contributions are too small, and all contribution is hugely appreciated.   Thank you!

Ruth

Life in the fast lane

It just keeps happening.  Every time I turn around 2 things have happened.  1.  Too much time has passed since we last updated everyone.  2. Fidel has gone and done more amazing things.

Big news item #1.  Fidel is a US Citizen!  Yeah – I know.  Wasn’t he ALWAYS a citizen?  Truth is, although he’s done more for his City, and this Country, than many, he’s just now achieved formal citizenship.  So cool and we are so proud to call him a fellow US Citizen.

Big news item #2.  He was honored yesterday for his dedication to Boise.  Even got a key from Mayor Bieter!  To top it off -  he was on the news.  Go check it out.    So – he’s an ‘honored’ Boise citizen only weeks after becoming a US Citizen.  Not too bad.

Fidel – you constantly amaze me and I’m so proud of you.

 

Keith

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