Calgary Nonprofit Addresses Rising Deaths Among South Sudanese Youth

Calgary, Canada – A tragic trend is unfolding in Calgary’s South Sudanese community, where young adults are losing their lives to drug overdose and gang violence. Despite the alarming number of deaths, there is a deafening silence surrounding these incidents, with peers unwilling to speak about the circumstances leading to these tragedies. This lack of transparency has left families grappling with a complex grief, compounded by the absence of answers from police reports or medical examiners.

Nyatuoy Buom Met Kujock, a promising 21-year-old, tragically passed away after collapsing at a friend’s house in November. Her family is left with unanswered questions, suspecting foul play in her sudden demise. This loss, among many others in the community, has prompted a local nonprofit to initiate workshops and focus groups aimed at finding solutions to address the growing crisis.

Psychologist Nhial Wicleek, dedicated to assisting the South Sudanese community, stresses the importance of uncovering the truth behind these deaths to facilitate healing. With an estimated 17,000 members in the local South Sudanese community witnessing 30 to 50 similar deaths over the past two decades, the need for intervention and support is urgent.

Daniel Buom Met, Nyatuoy’s grieving father, emphasizes the necessity of sparking dialogue within the community to prevent further tragedies. He advocates for open communication and collaboration among parents and youth to address the underlying issues contributing to these untimely deaths. Nyatuoy’s story serves as a poignant reminder of the potential lost and the devastation caused by the epidemic of substance abuse and violence among young South Sudanese individuals.

Amidst the heartbreak and loss, community members like Nyarout Jock are actively involved in initiatives aimed at uplifting and empowering youth within their community. By offering mentorship, sports programs, and cultural activities, they strive to create a supportive environment that fosters resilience and deters engagement in harmful behaviors.

As families continue to grapple with the aftermath of these tragic events, the community’s collective efforts to confront these challenges and provide support and resources are crucial for healing and prevention. Through shared stories, advocacy, and community engagement, there is hope for a brighter future and a safer environment for Calgary’s South Sudanese youth.