women in Central Asia sharing their stories
2022 is only six weeks old and already we have seen a few challenges but most of all a lot of hope and vision from our teams and local partners.
A little while ago someone quoted this proverb to me:
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life."
(Proverbs of Salomon)
I think that describes very well what we are experiencing in the middle of much trouble. Two stories for you:
For the last 5 months we were in touch with our local staff and partners, many facing fear and anxiety - hope had been crushed and deferred ... their hearts and souls were sick, virtual support can only help with limits.
In January we joined the UN nutrition cluster, got training started, groups of staff meeting together, planning a Nutrition Project for Under 5 year old and breastfeeding mothers. The first of our international manager was able to go and join them for a few weeks and get things going.
The staff and the international team, are starting to dream again. We are starting to see that we are still welcome, yes even invited to make a difference in these horrible times.
If our team was a tree - it certainly was withering over the last months but now it is coming back to life, and we are full of vision and hope to provide life to many children and mothers in the next months.
We are not sure yet if we will fundraise for this project here on GG - but if you want to contribute write us or give to this general project with a note Afghanistan Nutrition Project and we ensure that it will go to the right place!!
The country we considered the most stable of all our project locations started the year with riots, demonstrations, military shooting demonstrators.
The team went into lock down. Once more there was fear and worry what was happening, where would this leave us our women's groups, the anti trafficking work, ...
but only 3 weeks later the groups are meeting again, and in the women's empowerment groups we see a trust and through that hope and life like never before.
Last week a new women walked into the group - after listening to the others for some time, she said i have heard about you and that i can trust you not to judge or gossip. I need to tell someone something I have never told anyone before.
Then she shared a story of abuse she had experienced as a girl. Something that in this "shame and honour" culture was not permitted to happen, or to be confronted. Something for which society blames the girls never the perpetrator.
For the first time in her life, this woman was able to unburden herself, find comfort and listening ears and hearts in this group of women who all have gone through hardship in life. Together they show and build in each other, resilience and hope ... through which they can find life.
I hope you can celebrate these stories with us - and dream with us so that the tree of life might grow in the middle of these communities.
Thanks for partnering with us for hope, capacity and community.