Alabama Honduras Medical Educational Network
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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Hunger to Hope in One Generation: Women Beading for God, Pt. 3

Introducing the “Río de Agua Viva” team!

To La Ceiba, Honduras we go to TEACH, to LISTEN, and to CARE. Made up of a wide variety of first-time missionaries, this team and its message are growing. Up from ten members after just a few weeks to almost twenty after three months of planning. Why has this team grown so large in the absence of a typical AHMEN medical brigade component? I think the key part in our message, beyond TLC, is our pursuit to SHARE!

Sharing is an equal exchange, a luxury we take advantage of, and an experience that the disenfranchised don't always enjoy on a regular basis. Of course, the under-appreciated of the world are forced to sacrifice as a form of sharing, but true sharing is not a sacrifice! The act of teaching is sharing information. Information is power. The process of listening opens up pathways for empathy. To empathize is to begin to break down barriers. The act of caring is a pursuit of freedom. Being free is to build bridges to success and burn down the ones toward failure. Sharing is what we are on this earth to do.

Who is on this team??

What will they be doing in La Ceiba?

Stay tuned to find out next week...Same AHMEN time, Same AHMEN blog!

Together, we are the difference.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Happy International Women's Day 2013!

The facts are plain and simple.  We assume women and girls are being reached.  They are not.  We assume things are getting better, but better is not good enough.  The choice isn't girls over boys.  The choice is justice over judgement.  In a nation where almost one in six women over the age of 14 has been abused, we have work to do.  A child dies from water-borne illness every twenty seconds, but clean water missions are not enough to change a lifestyle.  Men and women both further the cylce of abuse.  Our Honduran brothers and sisters must know that they are too good to be abused, that they are too good to abuse, or else we are not doing our job as humanitarians.  AHMEN is making strides by investing in women, but each of our teams must do more.  Honduras deserves it.  Central America deserves it.  Your sisters, daughters, and mothers deserve it.  You deserve it; for the problem lies within all of us too.

"I change myself, I change the world."
--Gloria Anzaldúa

How can you invest in women's empowerment projects with AHMEN?

Shalom is a home in La Ceiba giving young women the chance at a brighter tomorrow.

"Las Mujeres Bisuteras de Dios" is a cooperative and microenterprise helping families transition out of poverty through making and selling jewelry

The AHMEN-SIFAT Initiative equips local leaders with the knowledge to train fellow community members to maintain a healthy, self-confident, productive, and just society.

The Deaf School in Plan de Flores helps students with disabilities beyond the reach of local school systems.

Contact me today to learn more about how you can invest in one of AHMEN's meaningful projects in Honduras.  

Again in the words of Latin American feminist Gloria Anzaldúa, "Do work that matters. Vale la pena."

Together, we are the difference.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Hunger to Hope in One Generation: Women Beading for God, Pt. 2

The Jewelry School at Los Laureles
After Ezekiel Nichols joined a team to Honduras several years back, he returned to the U.S. and never said another word about his visit. It wasn't until two years ago that he approached AHMEN with a call to start a system of microenterprises at the dump in La Ceiba with the ultimate goal of helping families work their way out of life in the trash. Last summer the “De La MontañaAl Mar” team identified a group of women interested in starting small businesses. Last August the “Los Amigos” team further identified a group of women willing to learn to make and sell jewelry as a means to start their own business. About this time a lady by the name of Peggie Hurlston volunteered to lead a weekly jewelry-making class with Marlene Lawrence to help the ladies at the dump with their pursuits.
One of the first things Peggie shared with us after beginning to teach each Saturday was that the women she was teaching don't like their community to be referred to as the “dump,” and the name of their community is Los Laureles. In an emotional-insecurity stemming from the comparative enormity of our own wealth we had failed to see that we were not building a community, that a community was already there. Today, though, there is a community within Los Laureles dedicated to education. This community calls themselves “Las Mujeres Bisuteras De Dios.” They are “The Women Beading For God,” and they need your help!
From L to R: Suyapa, Peggie, Elda, Nellie, Idalia, Michael, Julian, Brenda, Martha

In addition to monetary donations, “Las Mujeres Bisuteras De Dios” will recycle and re-purpose materials from:

-your old jewelry
-your old beading supplies and jewelry-making equipment
-you old belts and purses

They also need your team to come visit and work with them. In my next blog, I will tell you about a team of 15 volunteers designing a team to specifically go work with the new entreprenuers at Los Laureles.

If you want to know more about how you can join a team or support one of the many AHMEN projects in Honduras, feel free to contact Dr. Tom Camp, Mary Guffey, and Michael Franklin for more information.