Carl's Open Road

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  • INTERVIEWED BY:

    10K Miles From Home

  • INTERVIEW LOCATION:

    Portland, OR

  • AIRED ON:

    Indie: Team 10k Miles from Home (US)

CARL WILKENS

Director
World Outside My Shoes

“There're so many things that we can do in our lives, and we miss so much of them because we're afraid to trust, we're afraid to take risks.”

INTERESTS:

Non-Profit Organizations

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Community Culture Dedication Fear Risk

FOUNDATION:

Helping People

TAGS:

building schools, chaos, freedom, genocide, helping others, loyalty, mission trip, people, Rwanda, South Africa, trust, volunteering, war

BIOGRAPHY:

  • Was the only American to stay in Rwanda during the 1994 genocide; delivered water, food, supplies to people in need.
  • Had the opportunity to volunteer in Africa while he was in college; went to South Africa for a year.
  • He started building schools, operating health centers all over the continent.
  • He had been in Rwanda for four years when the genocide began; wouldn’t have been able to leave his friends and just say, “I’ll pray for you.”
  • Had to stay inside his house at all times for three weeks; “the only people on the streets were the killers.”
  • Stresses the Rwandan people were always hospitable, generous to him; his neighbors saved his life on one of the first nights of the raids.
  • In 2008, started World Outside My Shoes to share his experiences in Rwanda.
  • Tells his students and clergy not to worry about the future: he’s been a teacher, an aid worker, now a pastor, and he’s open to whatever’s next.

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