After years of seeing his fellow Sudanese die of disease, Dau was living in America, working various jobs, receiving an education and being free from a life of war and instability. Then he had the idea for a health clinic in Sudan, and the concept grew to reality with the help of his church.
"I see money from Americans for free, so I want this clinic to be free," Dau said.
The John Dau Sudan Foundation took its first steps in May 2007 with the opening of the Duk Lost Boys Clinic. According to the pamphlet for the Koiye Miooc campaign -- which is Dinka for "generous persons" -- the foundation acts as the primary benefactor and overseer for the clinic, which has provided care to more than 5,000 patients since opening last year.
With the help of the Skaneateles Chamber of Commerce, Dau's clinic will be able to help even more people. In May, the chamber held a golf outing, which president Dick Pitman said has grown since the outing began, and Dau was given a check for $8,000 to benefit the foundation during the chamber meeting.
"I want to thank everyone, for your generous donation will go to the clinic in south Sudan, Africa," Dau said to chamber members.
According to Dau, based on the first year of having the clinic open, it will cost approximately $300,000 annually to fund basic clinic services. The Koiye Miooc campaign has been organized with the hope of reaching 1,000 people who are able to donate $25 a month, or $300 a year, which will make it possible for the foundation to keep the clinic up and running.
"Thank God for keeping me alive for I could be here today," Dau said. "There are no generous people like Americans."
Also during the chamber meeting, the Skaneateles Historical Society was provided with the balance of the funds raised during the golf outing, in the amount of $1,016.
The funds will be put toward the Creamery expansion. Bob Eggleston gave an overview of the work being done to the Creamery and a brief history of how the historical society came to be.
According to Eggleston, the large collection of artifacts and documents all started with a dozen people in the 1960s that shared a common interest of preserving local history.