Message from Executive Director ~ Sister India
I love the scenes in the movie The Help when Aibileen tells Baby Girl, “You is kind, you is smart,
you is important.” She tells her this same message over and over again, because she loves the
girl and wants her to believe in her own great value.
How often do we need to tell ourselves, and each other, the same words?
Please, let me tell you today, from the bottom of my heart,
“You are kind. You are smart. You are important!”
You are a beautiful and unique creation, much beloved by God.
You matter. Your life has great meaning.
You were put here on earth for many beautiful reasons.
You are also important to women and girls living in India!
This past year, the callmesister.com community supported almost two entire classes of 30 students each.
The students you send to school each day are impoverished women who at the beginning of the year could not read or write, and often did not know about their human rights under Indian law. They are desperately in need, and extremely grateful for this opportunity to change their lives. Because I’ve been there, attended the classes, and met with some of these women and girls, I know how much it means to them and to their families. I’ve also read the followup surveys of the impact you are having. Daughters and sons are sent to school instead of into early marriage or child labor. Students’ income doubles, and they gain a renewed sense of their own value and importance. Households are changed. Husbands begin to respect their wives. Generational oppression is ended.
This has happened more than 50 times over, in more than 50 very important households, this school year. Because of you!
On behalf of these women and girls, “Thank You!”
As I looked over the classes supported this year and the callmesister.com fundraising page for Sister
India, I saw so many different people who came together in many ways to make this possible.
Some people shared about us on Facebook or Twitter, or told a friend about the work that we
do. Others gave $10.00, which will support a student for 4 months; together with others you
have sent a student to school for a year! Others gave to support one or more students.
One of my favorite stories comes from iSissy1. Bonnie Bemis gave up her Diet Coke for a year, and signed up to give that amount monthly to Sister India instead. This decision meant a lot to Bonnie, and has brought wondrous change in the lives of the students she is supporting.
No matter how you supported these women and girls, we work hard to make sure your
donations accomplish as much as possible. Just $30 pays for a student to attend an entire year
of classes, and provides her with a tremendous opportunity. Reading, writing, math, sanitation, and women’s rights are among the lessons they learn. Local business people volunteer their time to teach them how to survey the market for needed products. Local doctors take a day to meet with the students to discuss their health needs.
I’ve looked into the faces of some of the women and girls we’re helping. They have thanked me for the opportunity, and told me of the beautiful ways their lives have changed. Because of you. Because someone cared enough to support their place in these transformative classes. When you look at the photos we send your way, please remember that these women and girls are grateful for your support, for the time you take to get the word out and involve others in the effort. As my favorite coffee mug says, “She’s worth rescuing.”* And you are essential to that effort. Let’s continue to remind each other, and ourselves: You are kind. You are smart. You are important. Your help matters very much to them, and to us. Thank you!
Sisters, one of our stated objectives is to encourage women worldwide. We cannot think of a better way to do that than to help our sisters in India. What we love about this opportunity is that through our joint efforts, we can make an impact. We will be sharing more about Sister India in August. In the meantime, to read about what Sister India students and their system for learning, visit Sister India Progress. For regular updates, you may request a monthly e-mail from Sister India.