Aug 24, 2016

We Graduated!

Esther's Aid Global Giving Report # 4                                                                                      August 2016

To our Dear Generous Donors,

In our previous report, Olive, Valentine, and Laisa gave us their personal stories, sharing their history of how they escaped the cruel hands of sex traffickers. As they were brought into Esther's Aid and joined other students in the Program, they began to experience a newness of life. There was a class of nine in the Sewing and Fashion Design Program. Along with Claudine, another survivor, these three young women registered enthusiastically and joined this group. After graduating, they received their own sewing machines and their lives were transformed. See them pictured below with Esther's Aid Founder and Mission Director, Clare Effiong, looking so pleased and proud. (See attached).

The progress report: Claudine, with her new machine, is the proud owner of a small business. The full confidence that she will succeed in life, is unparalleled. Valentine and Olive work together. They both secured jobs at the garment design and sewing store in Kigali City. These three are doing great.  Laisa is on her own trying to secure a store front for her business.

There is good news about others that we have reported on. Those in petty trading - vegetables and charcoal are improving tremendously. The hairdressing group is doing well, especially the hair-braiding skills. These initiatives will help transition the girls and women from their past life of controlled abuse to stable independence.

In our continuous efforts to identify these individuals or groups, we partner with Community Leaders, especially in the Villages near the nation’s borders. We organized a close–knit meeting to listen and hear from the victims. Based on their age, needs, and desire to overcome trauma, we want to know the specific areas for intervention. The sorrow and bitterness is deep, but we help as much as we can with the limited resources. Since we started reaching out to the victims, more are coming out to seek help. (See attached picture of the Counseling Session).

It's been a tedious journey; a mixture of excitment and sometimes emotional pain, as we work to encourage and restore these deeply traumatized young women. This project is providing short-term room and board, healthcare, counseling, advocacy, and financial aid to 50 girls and women who are victims of sex trafficking in Rwanda.

Those trained at Esther’s Aid are benefiting tremendously. With the school set up, we are able to monitor their progress, along with other youth in our program. Confidence, joy and hope is restored. They are positively looking forward to a brighter and greater future.

The team at Esther's Aid is enormously grateful for the funding Global Giving donors have provided for this project. It would not exist without your generosity!  We hope you will continue to support us and keep us in your thoughts and prayers.  Thank you so much.

With God's blessings,

Clare Effiong, Founder and Mission Director, Esther's Aid

PS.  We hope we will see you on October 25 at our Fourth Annual "Dinner by the Bite" honoring Restauranteur, Author, and Celebrity Chef Marcus Samuelsson!

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Attachments:
May 26, 2016

From Victims to Victors!

Global Giving Progress Report 3

Olive, Laisa and Valentine were in terrible situations, but they all found hope in Esther’s Aid. These young women were orphaned and lived in various homes and circumstances that drove them into attempting to commit suicide. After their rescue from these deplorable situations, they felt unwanted, rejected, abandoned, and ultimately had no faith in any human being. Now, they have completed their training and Esther’s Aid is empowering them with sewing skills to help them build a productive future.  

The story about these girls' progress demonstrates the power of love and commitment to raise the poor and needy from the dunghill. We watch these girls daily with excitement and fulfillment because they are now fully empowered and hope is restored for a greater tomorrow.

 

Please open the attachment to read  their stories and see their pictures!

Equally, we are monitoring our young women whom we empowered with petty trading in charcoal, tomatoes, and bridal rental. They are all coming out from the depths of despair to the light, revealing vibrant spirits that were buried.

Culinary Arts Students: Those brought into Esther’s Aid school through the Global Giving Empowerment Project are gearing up for their internship programs in the next two months. After graduation, there is opportunity for securing jobs at the entry point into the hospitality and food industry.

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Mar 2, 2016

Exciting news about our young Survivors!

In our first report, we featured some of the victims of sex-trafficking with their small businesses.  The market stalls that sell merchandise & vegetables and the charcoal stall are both successful and expanding.  The project is progressing. We are now moving into an exciting and innovative empowerment program.  We are organizing the group leaders' training, who, in turn, will go back to train their group members in Fabric Design and Hat Design.  The young women will use their local art forms – batik and brush, as well as, tie-dye style. Big doors for small businesses will open up for these young women to take back their lives.

This January, we took 10 young survivors into Esther’s Aid School for Careers in the Culinary Arts, Sewing and Fashion Design. 

Clare goes on to say, “Whenever I think of submitting this report, I remember individual faces, expressed through different emotional outbursts.  As I look from group to group, trying to figure out how best to handIe the needs associated with them – poverty, feelings of rejection and hopelessness, I came up with one solution: LOVE.  This is the only tool powerful enough to lift up these young survivor victims.“  Esther's Aid reaches out and shows them we care.

We can embrace and empower these young women and give them hope for a future with dignity.  We remain grateful to our donors who give to our campaign on Global Giving.  It is because of you that Esther's Aid has the opportunity to create and fund this program to rescue the young victims of sex-trafficking. God bless you and Global Giving. We count on your support.

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