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RHS student studies genocide

Rosemount High School student Charley Belden attended World Without Genocide's second annual Summer Institute for high school students Aug. 14-16 in St. Paul. The three-day program, "Children of Genocide: The Holocaust, Rwanda, and Darfur," focused on the children that suffer from genocide - as child soldiers, victims, survivors and refugees - and the connection between genocide and the prevalence of hate and violence in our communities and around the world.

Belden participated in the Institute as a first year student. She had the opportunity to meet with two local Holocaust survivors, learn about the psychology of hate and participate in leadership development training.

Belden and other students met with John Bagwell of the Enough Project in Washington, D.C., an organization that focuses on human rights issues in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan and Darfur. Bagwell told students the extraction of minerals in Congo continues a bloody conflict that has left over six million people dead in 20 years. Those minerals are used in all small electronics products, including cell phones and laptops. The Enough Project's campaign, the Conflict-Free Initiative, encourages schools, communities and cities to buy electronics only from companies not using "conflict minerals" from Congo.