On a rainy Monday evening on May 14th, Women of Vision NYC chapter hosted its first film screening event, Journey to Jamaa: Becoming Part of a Bigger Family. As people entered Central Presbyterian Church in New York City, attendees of the event saw various children’s faces appearing on the screen as a couple of African drums played in the background. A stage was set for the attendees to be transported to another world. . . that of Derick and Margret.
With a heartfelt “Jambo” (Swahili word for hello) from Anais Reyes, the Co-Chair for WoV NYC chapter began the evening’s program by providing an overview and purpose of the event: redefine what a family or Jamaa is. Next, Amy and Charles Olson gave a parent/son testimony of how they were impacted by World Vision’s child sponsorship. Amy shared that her family sponsors children from various countries that matches the ages of her own children. She described how child sponsorship provided her children a rare opportunity to get to know a world that is vastly different from their own and become more grateful for all that they have. Although his sponsor child is on the other side of the globe in Africa, Charles talked about how he was able to connect and develop a relationship through letter writing.
Before the film began, several members of the Women of Vision NYC chapter led a group exercise that helped the audience better understand the character’s situations. It was an opportunity to put ourselves in shoes of the characters of the movie. As the lights dimmed and the movie began, the audience entered the world of two siblings in Uganda in search for family. Although not a documentary, the story was based on a true story of two orphans. Dadjie Saintus, the Education Chair, reminded the audience that Derick & Margaret’s story represented countless stories of children around the world.
To conclude the evening, Rhodora Soh and Katherin Park presented three different ways to take action and extend jamaa across the world. As the Child Sponsorship Chair and moved by the movie, Rhodora passionately conveyed the need for sponsors to provide basic needs (nutrition, healthcare, education and spiritual nurture) to vulnerable children like Derick and Margaret. She led the group for a short time of prayer for children around the world who are suffering. Next, Katherin, the Advocacy Chair, demonstrated how easily and quickly someone with a Smartphone can make a difference. She directed the group to visit NYC chapter’s Women of Vision website, where a link for a form letter to Congress could be found. With just a few clicks, the audience participated in sending e-letters to congress encouraging them NOT to cut The International Affairs budget (at only 1.4 % of the total federal budget) as it provides life-saving assistance to combat extreme global poverty, hunger and disease. Lastly, Katherin introduced the “Strong Women, Strong World” project as a third way to respond to the extreme need, particularly focusing on women and girls who often are the biggest victims of poverty.
For more details on how you can take action CLICK HERE!