Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Introducing .. My Sudan Sister

Last fall I applied to Women for Women International to sponsor a sister - a survivor  of war. My application coincided with an appearance by WFW founder Zainab Salbi on Oprah. Surprise, surprise - her appearance generated huge interest and created an increased level of sponsorship activity  I can only imagine. They contacted me to let me know that they had a huge backlog of applications and donations but that I would soon be connected with a sister.

Today was that day. I ripped open the large white envelope bearing the now familiar Women For Woman logo, so excited to put a face to the name that had been provided to me. I opened the folder and there was Monica, a twenty-three year old who lives in the Sudan where she cares for seven children. It's difficult to get too much from one picture, but the eyes don't lie. Monica stares back from dull, haunted eyes, with a posture that can't disguise fatigue and despair.

With the sponsorship she will join a circle of 25 women her support network and have a year to take intensive, life changing training that will help her gain control over her life.
The enclosed letter was generous in its gratitude: "You are the reason for this transformation Lynda. Your sister was only able to enter the Women for Women International program because you reached out to her."
Hardly. Monica is reaching out to me and over this year, we will learn alot about one another and I will learn about the struggles women face in the most desperate conditions. I will do this from the security of my home - my safe haven. She may not be so lucky. And I know that once again, I will get back more than I give. Perhaps Monica and I will resurrect hope and both undergo a transformation of the humankind, sister to sister.

Read my other posts about Women for Women International:
Global Family
Women for Women ... a Sisterhood


  1. I started this comment a couple of times and couldn't get it right, as it just ended up sounding wrong.
    Suffice to say it sounds an amazing project. I would be interested in finding out more about it. So I will click on the link but may ask you more.
    The problem for me is not compassion fatigue more so many tugs on my heart strings that I'm begining to feel overstretched financially, but on the other hand...

  2. Mandy, I agree that the need in the world and the persistent demand for support from causes and charities can be overwhelming. I am just in a space in my life where I am trying to look past my own "village" to grasp the issues and struggles of my fellow humans. My posts are not meant to promote anything more than understanding and awareness and to share my journey - not impose it on others.

    I think something is better than nothing - even if that something is empathy, caring and prayers.

    Thanks for dropping by and for your interest. I already know you have a big heart!

  3. It's easy to see in her twenty three years,Monica has had a hard life which has left its mark upon her...Let's hope it will change before she reaches 24.

  4. Lyn......you never cease to amaze me with your outrach.I trust you are an inspiration to your friends and family. Many feel a you do but never complete the circle by expressing their involvment. It costs little to care..only time andunderstanding. polar bear

  5. Thinking of you, and Monica. Thanks for sharing your thoughts...


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