Sweating for Sisterhood: Keep A Girl in School in Uganda

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Or: The Little Pot That Could (But Almost Didn’t)

Flowers

I’ve had this pot for a while now.

Sitting atop my white IKEA table. Empty.

For several months I stared at it, guiltily.

And every day, it stared back at me, questioning. If it had eyebrows, I imagine one would have been raised, as if to cheekily ask, “Well … ?”

You see, it wasn’t supposed to be empty.

A few months ago, I was given this little pot as a gift. It was given with a beautiful invitation: to allow the pot to hold a dream. A dream that would take root, grow and flourish.

This was no ordinary pot. It was given with intention. It was a call to action.

The same day –almost the exact moment–I received that pot, I was given a very clear dream (I know, shocking right?) A calling was birthed in my heart over a sweet symphony of sisterhood voices rising together. I was swept up in it. God had given me instruction! How wonderful!

And though it was indeed wonderful, I was petrified to take ownership of my dream. To allow it to take root in a practical way. My “Yes” was barely audible.

You see, I knew if I said “Yes” a little too loudly, I would be held to my dream. And under no circumstances did I want to be held accountable.

What if I couldn’t do it?

What if I wasn’t talented or gifted or compelling enough?

Even worse, what if I simply didn’t follow through? What if I got too stressed, too busy, or too scared to even begin?

What if I just wanted the warm fuzzy part of the dream without all the hard work that went along with it?

So that little dream fluttered about in my heart, patting me on the back, comforting me like every good intention does, but with no action to ground it. To make it come alive.

And so the pot stayed empty.

Searching

But one day, amidst the quiet hum of a local Starbucks, I muttered the dream out loud to a trusted friend.

When she asked—logically—if I had taken any steps to turn it into a reality, I pathetically admitted I had not.

She laughed. And I couldn’t blame her. I mean, here I was, holding onto a dream that I thought was mine. Using it to make me sound rather impressive and spiritual.

But I hadn’t staked my claim. Planted my flag. I had yet to put my hand up and enthusiastically proclaim: “YES, God, I’ve got this one!”

My so-called-calling was as about as rooted as a hazy dandelion orb. Seeds scattering here and there, influenced completely by whichever way the wind was blowing that particular day.

I felt so fake in that moment. Which, for your information, is a completely slimy feeling.

But a feeling that forced me to do something drastic. Something crazy.

I put my hand up.

Maybe a small thing to you. But utterly earth-shattering for me.

Now, I wouldn’t say my hand is waving about wildly.
Goodness no. I’m still so afraid to fail it makes me want to assume the fetal position in my closet and never come out.

But at least my hand is up there. At last my hand is up there.

And so I planted a little flower in my pot, its bright yellow petals perkily calling to the heavens: “She’s got this one! Finally!”

And since that moment, the dream has taken root and begun to grow. It’s not just an abstract idea anymore.

It’s a reality.

A sweat-inducing, vulnerability-exposing reality.

PlantingSo I need to ask you something. Something I’m profoundly uncomfortable with.

Will you stand with me?

Today—yes today!— I’m hosting an event called Sweating For Sisterhood.

We’re advocating for a pretty spectacular cause: Keep a Girl in School through Living Hope.

Did you know that 40% of the young women in Gulu, Uganda drop out of school when they get their period?

Without basic necessities like underwear and sanitary pads, they are too embarrassed to attend school and eventually get so behind they have to drop out.

Without an education, these future world-changers will be overlooked for leadership roles and positions of influence in their country.
Their options become severely limited.

For approximately $40, the Keep a Girl in School program is able to provide a young woman with life skills training, sanitary towels and underwear for one year. $40 is the amount standing between a young woman and her education–her ability to influence and change the face of her nation. Of our nation.

This comes down to pads. Pads! Goodness that makes me angry!

Will you come alongside me today?

We want to let these young women know that we see them. We believe in them.

The sisterhood is standing today. And we need you.

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Our goal is to see one school—approximately 250 girls—sponsored. Would you be willing to join me … us?

If you’re in or near Langley, B.C, come party with us tonight at the Sweating For Sisterhood event. 
(Wear your workout gear!) There’ll be several of the SheLoves crowd there too, so come say hi!

KeepAGirlInSchool

__________________

Image credit (Flowers): Shannon Delmonico

Image credit (Keep a Girl in School): Tina Francis

 

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Megan Gahan
After over a decade in the fitness industry, Megan now spends her days chasing two pint-sized tornadoes disguised as little boys. By night, she is a writer and editor for SheLoves. A proper Canadian, Megan can often be found in the woods or at Tim Hortons. She writes at megangahan.com.
Megan Gahan
Megan Gahan

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