Imagine living in a society where you are considered garbage. Women in Sierra Leone already face challenges, but the women in a recent workshop have the added stigma of being blind, deaf, or disabled in other ways. The abuse that many of them face is unspeakable. Yet, there is life-changing Good News hope being made known. Women of Hope International has been an effective ministry among impoverished women with disabilities in Sierra Leone for 10 years.
Our HSI team partnered with Women of Hope, a part of Accessible Hope International, that serves approximately 350 women in the town of Makeni who have disabilities of many kinds including blindness, deafness, Post-Polio Syndrome, paralysis (from injuries or poorly administered immunizations),
Women with disabilities in Sierra Leone live at an even greater level of vulnerability than the average woman.
- 98% of women with disabilities fall below the HPI (Human Poverty Index – measured by income, education, water sources and life expectancy).
- Less than 2% of the women with disabilities earn a sustainable income or are employed.
- Less than 20% of these women have an education above primary school and 46% of them had no education at all.
- 70% of women with disabilities have suffered from rape or sexual exploitation.
A couple of months after the workshop, HSI received word that Women of Hope held a mini-workshop on trauma at each of the four centers where they serve women. The result was very positive. One of the women who was trained led four other workshops and reached hundreds of more women. May God continue to bring healing to these women and give them confidence as they lead more workshops through their country.
More information at https://accessiblehope.org/
*The training materials were adapted from those prepared by the Trauma Healing Institute. http://thi.