Sudan Sunrise, a non-profit organization that supports the work of NBA legend Manute Bol, announced today that it has joined forces with Dennis Garcia of the Potomac Management Group. Garcia learned of Sudan Sunrise, and it's mission of education and reconciliation, by a member of its Board of Advisors, Ambassador Sharon Wilkinson.

Inspired by Manute Bol's vision of building schools for children of all tribal, religious, and ethnic backgrounds in South Sudan to foster peace and reconciliation, and the resulting dedication of peace and reconciliation by Sudan Sunrise project director Rudwan Dawod, Garcia has already made a donation $25,000 to Sudan Sunrise, and has committed to donate an additional $25,000 to assist Rudwan in directing a reconciliation project in Torit, South Sudan. Garcia will travel to South Sudan later this month with Sudan Sunrise and a film crew to document the reconciliation project, and raise awareness and urge investment in Manute's school projects and the reconciliation project.

Garcia has also partnered with Sudan Sunrise on a campaign to raise an additional $50,000 for the reconciliation church building effort, as well as for Manute Bol's vision of building schools in the spirit of reconciliation. Garcia joins a growing list of Sudan Sunrise supporters, including Board Chairman John Zogby, working for peace and reconciliation through education and development projects in South Sudan.

Sudan Sunrise has built two school buildings with six classrooms, a kitchen, and a clean water system at the Manute Bol Primary School in Manute's home village of Turalei. Manute's school also provides one meal daily with food provided by the World Food Programme for both Christian and Muslim children who attend the school.

In addition to the school building efforts, Mr. Garcia had the chance to meet Sudan Sunrise project director Rudwan Dawod in September, and hear more about Rudwan's vision to direct a reconciliation project in which Muslims from Sudan, South Sudan, and the United States are working to rebuild a Catholic church in Torit, South Sudan.

Garcia first learned about Rudwan's reconciliation project through media coverage of Rudwan's unjust 45-day detention, arrest, and torture by Sudanese authorities in Khartoum. Rudwan, a Darfurian Muslim, believes the Sudanese government targeted him because of his humanitarian and reconciliation efforts with Sudan Sunrise to heal tensions between Christians and Muslims, and citizens of Sudan and South Sudan.

Rudwan also told Garcia about his first encounter with Bol while volunteering at the Manute Bol School in Turalei, South Sudan. Rudwan was instantly inspired by Manute's commitment for reconciliation and subsequently dedicated his life to promoting reconciliation between Muslims and Christians, and Sudan and South Sudan. Rudwan detailed the special relationship he had with Manute, until his untimely passing in 2010.

Media Contact:
Kody Kness, Deputy Executive Director
Sudan Sunrise