This week we were able to visit one of the largest government schools in our village. Going in to it I did not know this. There was a big miscommunication and I was given the number of girls as ninety. Salima and I took one hundred kits “just in case”.
They called the girls to come and they came. And kept coming. I start sweating it! After we were all in this thirteen by fifteen foot room we counted 260 girls! I had to run to the car and tell Christian to go to the house and get all the rest that we had!
It is amazing what God does with us. How we are welcomed into what is mostly Muslim students and teachers, the school is right on the grounds with the large mosque. But they welcomed us and were not offended when I gave them the message that Jesus loves them and God has made us just the way He wants us. After I gave them a talk about how they are “wonderfully and fearfully made” we educated them about menstruation. They asked very good questions and were free about talking about things they’ve faced. Shame, fear, terror when they didn’t know what was happening to their bodies. Jenifer threatened them beforehand that this was a safe place and no one should leave that room gossiping about anyone else so I think that gave them the feeling of freedom to talk. We also talk a little about boys (pretty much stay away from them!), safety and self-defense. Salima is so helpful as she is an example of what staying in school and hard work can accomplish. She encouraged them to not focus on boys and sex but in getting an education that will enable them to have a better life.
It was a huge blessing to be there and give out the kits. And as always the boys were fussing that they had been left out of something so we gave the school two soccer balls for them. That appeased them!
We are so thankful we are given these opportunities with open arms and the teachers tell us so many times how appreciative they are for the education part. I gave the head teacher our flip chart so that she and the other female teachers can educate the girls further.
Thank you to all who have donated time and money to help us keep girls in school. A big thanks to ladies in Leesville/Anacoco, Louisiana for their contribution that allowed me to have the extras we needed with that large group because of course the teachers also asked for kits!
We now have two seamstresses that are busy each month making more kits! They are so happy to be receiving a good income every month!
If you feel led to help us help young women stay in school, learn how to defend themselves (which is really important here also) there can never be too many kits. 100% of your donation goes to the kits and to the seamstresses that make them go to https://themandate.com/campaigns/hope-for-girls/
And a great big I love you to Raelee who was my photographer for the day! She has a natural talent and I have been encouraging her as much as possible. She has moved up to an intermediate Nikon camera but still gets reigned in for too many selfies and pics of her kitten! She really stepped out of her comfort zone for this one – that many people makes her (and I!) very nervous but I had coached her beforehand of the specific pics I wanted her to make sure she got. She nailed it!