FREMANTLE musician Rob Walker has raised $10,000 for a Ugandan orphanage by eating a cup of rice a day for a month.
Walker posted blog images of his skinny frame as he lost weight on the brutal rice diet and people responded by donating money to his cause.
Walker was inspired to raise money for the orphanage after watching the film Machine Gun Preacher, which was based on the life of Sam Childers, a former gang biker turned preacher and defender of South Sudanese orphans.
Like Childers, Walker is a reformed drug addict, who found God.
He remembers the day that changed his life in December 2011, when an inner voice made it clear, he could choose drugs, “or stop and use music.”
When he got home, a flyer was jammed in his door, “which you couldn’t have done unless you unlocked the door and closed it.”
It advertised a church “down the road” so he went along.
“The support and love was immense…it changes lives, including mine.”
Childers was horrified by the atrocities he witnessed during a visit to a mission in South Sudan and has dedicated his life to rescuing child soldiers from rebel armies.
Having met Childers, and later visited him, Walker is even more determined to raise money for the cause, writing the song For Freedom.
The video for the song is inspiring and disturbing, featuring a mix of laughing Sudanese children and those mutilated and tortured by the brutal rebel militia, the Lord’s Resistance Army.
Walker’s happy to make people cry, and hopes the tears loosen the purse strings, because all the money raised by the song goes to Machine Gun Preacher.
You’ll find For Freedom on Itunes.
Sam Childers is speaking at the Fly By Night on September 1.
Tickets at http://www.flybynight.org/machinegunpreacher
by JENNY D’ANGER