July 10, 2010

Loving Our Sisters

I have a very set view on adoption.  As much as I love my Miles, I wish that he had never had to be an orphan.  I wish that his mother had had an advocate.  A person who cared about her- who empowered her to be able to provide a good life for herself and her children.  I wish that his mom had had all the resources that she needed so that she could continue to parent her adorable children- so that my Miles would never know that pain of losing her.

When Miles got home, we started the process to sponsor a Congolese woman through Women for Women International.  I felt so strongly about this.  I wanted to know that in our own way, we were helping our "sisters" out there to be able to have better lives.  We chose Women for Women (WFW) because their philosophy on helping women is not "charity".  They don't give handouts.  They empower.  They run programs for women to teach them a trade, and how to run their own businesses, how to care for their children properly.  They learn basic health principles.  WFW teaches these women about what it means to have a voice.  They prepare women to go back to their villages and make an impact.  I love it.

We write letters and emails to our sister in Congo.  She has 5 children that she is caring for.  I am so proud of her that she is creating a better life for the children she is taking care of. Those children will never have to know what it is like to live in an orphanage. Our sister's picture is on our refrigerator and when I look at her I feel connected to the parts of Congo that I love the most: the resilience and the beauty of the people there.  Congo is the worst place in the world to be a woman.  The sexual violence and brutality against women there is mind blowing.  Our sister is changing her life and the life of her children and her village and that gives me so much inspiration.  Her bravery encourages me. 

This morning Sadie asked if she could make a card to mail to our sister.  She got out our crayons and markers and got to work.  I said a little prayer of gratitude that we live in America- where my daughter will not live in fear of being burned out of her home and raped by malitias.  Where my daughter can go to school for free.  Where my daughter could grow up to be the president one day if she chose.  Where my daughter has the whole world at her fingertips.  I also prayed for the safety of our sisters in Congo and prayed that the day will come when all women in the world will have a voice.

If you've never seen the following video- I encourage you to take a peek.  It is beyond inspiring about all the wonderful things that can happen in the world when you empower young women and girls.  We can move mountains! 

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