As one of the ‘Lost Boys of Sudan,’ John Dau is featured in Christopher Quinn’s award-winning documentary, God Grew Tired of Us. He has experienced trials in life that most people would struggle to imagine.
Born in war-torn Sudan, Dau is one of 27,000 boys driven from their villages when the northern Arab government attacked the ethnic minority population of Southern Sudan in 1987. For the next five years, John led groups of displaced boys across Sudan for hundreds of miles, struggling with starvation, disease, and violence. In 1992, he was placed in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya where, at 17, he received a basic education. In 2001, Dau was selected to immigrate to the United States and settled in Syracuse, New York.
Following his initial culture shock, Dau took on two jobs, earned an associate’s degree and has become an American success story. Currently the President of the John Dau Foundation, he is an influential participant in many efforts to bring hope and peace to the people of South Sudan including by raising over $1,000,000 to build a medical clinic in his home village. Dau co-authored his first book, God Grew Tired of Us: A Memoir, in 2007 and has received many prestigious awards, among them National Geographic’s Emerging Explorers award and the 2009 Caring Institute award.