Drumroll, please! We have some very exciting news to share!
After months of planning and fundraising and preparing, we are launching our new training site at Kaunda Square Compound!!!
We are still have a bit to go to have this program fully funded, but we’re launching in faith that it’ll come in, because the women in Kaunda Square are so very ready to begin their life-changing journey.
Last week I had the opportunity to meet with the new group of women in their new training space. I hyped up the announcement and shouted out, “SURPRISE!!” I had different expectations of how the women would react. Instead of crazy shouts and screams and impromptu dancing (per usual), there were just hesitant smiles and a few quiet cheers.
What on earth?! Wasn’t this supposed to be the best news ever for this group of women who has been meeting weekly for over 6 months at the possibility of them starting soon?
Then I surveyed the room. On the outer edges of the room, surrounding the group of women in the middle, was our staff and current students. Those were the women with the hugest smiles written across their faces, cheering to each other, busting out some moves in their chairs.
Because they know. They know the life-change that these women in Kaunda Square are about to experience. They know that this program is real and is powerful, and is so very effective in vulnerable communities. They know their own success stories, stories of empowerment and rising above oppression to take steps on a journey of HOPE.
That’s worth getting excited about. The hope-filled potential in 16 women’s lives. The journey ahead of them is worth cheering for. They may not know all that lies before them, but friends, we sure do. You do, you’ve seen it too.
As we begin this program for the 16 women below, we want to invite 16 of you to join the HOPE Club in a symbolic and necessary step to get this program going. When you join the HOPE Club from the button below, you’ll receive a thank you note from one of the 16 women. You can know that you are directly involved with this launch, and that we couldn’t do this without you.
Introducing, our new 16 in Kaunda Square Compound:
When I asked these women if they wanted to share their stories, almost half of them rose out of their chairs and followed me outside, so eager to be heard. Here’s one of these powerful stories:
Mwengu is almost 26 years old. Her dad died before she finished grade 12, and when he passed, so did the income for her to continue her education. She has 6 siblings, and still lives at home as the second born child with much responsibility in the family. All of Mwengu’s friends are prostitutes in Kaunda Square. They go to the bars as early as 7am to begin working. They have children from different fathers, and the children can’t attend school because their mothers are essentially absent from their lives due to their lifestyles. Mwengu is passionate about helping her friends. It’s so hard for her to watch her friends choose such difficult lives. Her ultimate dream after finishing our course is to start a specialized training course specifically for women involved in prostitution, reaching out to such a hurting and needy people group in the compound.
We invite 16 of you to step up and join our 16 women in Kaunda Square, taking brave and bold steps to give HOPE to a new community. Join us.
With Chikondi and HOPE,