New York City Women of Vision

Welcome to the New York City Women of Vision. We're glad you stopped by. We are a group of like-minded women who seek to serve the poor, locally and globally. Come join us as we educate, serve, and advocate for the poor.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Fall Kick-Off Recap

NYC Women of Vision jumpstarted its new year with its Fall Kickoff event at the World Vision offices in Midtown Manhattan.

Co-chair Amy Olson introduced the evening's guest speakers: Women of Vision National Director Cindy Breihl, Rahsaan Graham, Senior Director of Child Protection and Education at World Vision US, and Allison Shigo, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Healing Hands of Joy.

Guest Speakers: Rashaan Graham,
Allison Shigo, and Cindy Breilh
Cindy shared how Women of Vision, a volunteer ministry of World Vision, is making an impact through the Strong Women, Strong World initiative, which supports sustainable change in some of the most difficult places in the world to be a girl or a woman. She shared a story about Francia, an 18-year old woman who secured birth certificates for herself and 150 girls. She was recognized for her achievement by the United Nations, and used her prize money to help those in her community. Her efforts has now planted a dream in her to become a lawyer.

Cindy also described Strong Women, Strong World's comprehensive approach towards achieving gender equity by addressing the most urgent needs of girls and women: child and maternal health; water, hygiene and sanitation; economic development, Channels of Hope for Gender; and Child Protection and Education. All of these projects are community-driven long-term interventions that will not only provide girls and women resources, but also equal rights and opportunities.

As the Senior Director of Child Protection and Education, Rashaan has traveled to some of the toughest countries in which the girl child is considered to have little to no value within her family and the larger community. A girl's virginity can be sold for as little as a few hundred dollars, and girls and women remain highly trafficked.

World Vision's approach towards child protection is to find a strong local partner so we can design long-term interventions that will be supported and led by the community. Indeed, the majority of World Vision's staff are nationals in the 95 countries that has a World Vision office. World Vision provides a continuum of care in girls' and women's live through its model of prevention, protection, and restoration.

He described World Vision's approach in action in Bangladesh, one of the poorest countries in the world that is also largely Muslim. Rashaan spent 10 days there with the World Vision staff and its child-friendly center, which happens to be across the street from a brothel. The brothel also shares a block with a local police station so even though prostitution is illegal in Bangladesh, many officials turn their heads. Many of the children at World Vision's center are children of the women who work in the brothel. World Vision's role, however, is not to shut down the brothel - when you close one of them, women simply go to another brothel. World Vision seeks to break the cycle by protecting the children of the mothers work there, so the children will have the opportunity to dream of a different life than the life that they know in the brothel.

Rashaan also challenged us and the Church to take on the primary role as the protector of girls and women. The global hypothesis among leading NGOs such as the UN is that the Church has received a mandate to be the leader in child protection.

Healing Hands of Joy is an organization that exists to bring hope, happiness and a second chance to women affected by obstetric fistula. It trains women to become Safe Motherhood Ambassadors, former fistula patients that are taught basic maternal health skills including; reproductive health, hygiene, sanitation and prenatal care. Allison Shigo shared how World Vision's support of Healing Hands of Joy has helped her organization expand its reach and move closer to its goal of eradicating fistulas in Tigray region of Ethopia by 2020. Healing Hands of Joy is also going to partner with World Vision's Channels of Hope for Gender program, an innovative approach to exploring gender from a biblical perspective. Healing Hands of Joy has also invited Women of Vision National Chapters to travel to Ethiopia in 2014 (learn more).

We also must give a shoutout to Events Chair, Darcy Plimpton-Sims, who served an amazing spread of food and drinks! The night closed out with a raffle of Women of Vision swag and a beautiful Ethopian scarf, courtesy of Healling Hands of Joy and an announcement of multiple opportunities to get involved with our chapter.


Check out how you can get involved!

November 3: NYC Marathon Cheer tent for World Vision runners. 
For more information contact Cynthia at

November 6: Child Sponsorship Party. 
For more information please contact Rhodora Soh at

December 5: Bowery Mission Women’s Center Christmas Decorating Party. 
For more information contact Amy at

December 12: Merry Mojitos and Micro loans. 
For more information contact Amy at

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