STORIES THAT INSPIRE A FIGHT FOR FREEDOM
Rejection... one of the most heart wrenching realities of women living in poverty.
Often this rejection leads to a lack of self worth, a lack of hope and the inability to have a foreseeable future for oneself. It’s out of this desperation for a sense of value that we stand in the battle against slavery. We’re realizing, over and over, that women in poverty have faced the deepest kind of rejection. Without someone to care or to show them they’re worth fighting for, slavery creeps itself into their lives.
Let me explain.
Samphors is one of the most remarkable young women we’ve ever met. She smiles like there’s not a care in her world. She’s simultaneously playful and shy. She’s petite and often wears her hair in a long braid. She is a young teenage girl, who balances school, her employment at LandMine Design and caring for her family.
We learned very quickly that the pressure this young girl faces in addition to deep rejection is more than one teenager should ever have to carry. Samphors lost her mother to a disease; a disease Samphors now battles herself. There is an extreme amount of pressure on Samphors to provide for herself and her father as they are very poor ... but there never seems to be enough. Her father deeply battles the realities of poverty. He struggles to know how to love his teenage daughter, leaving Samphors feeling unloved and rejected. Rejection also comes for her by way of her peers and friends at school when they find out she is sick with a disease and treat her poorly.
It takes so much courage for Samphors and others like her to rise above poverty because in addition to the pressure of poverty, she has to face and battle the lies she’s been hearing all her life. Lies that she will have no future because of a life threatening disease. Lies that she’s not enough. Lies that education won’t amount to anything and she should do what her society tells her to do and quit school to work across the border illegally where the potential of being enslaved or abused is much too great.
"...in addition to the pressure of poverty, she has to face and battle the lies she’s been hearing all her life."
To face the lies and rejection these women hide in their hearts is no little thing. Cycles of poverty are laced with lies about one's purpose and value, leading to hopelessness. Over and over again, we see these women flight like crazy to confidently believe in a new truth about themselves and not listen to the voices limiting their potential. It’s a battle for value.
Samphors learned in the LandMine Design program that she is valuable; that she matters and has a purpose for living. She believes that she was created by a living and loving God who cares for her. In all of her pain and rejection, today she tells us that she is a daughter of Jesus. The power that resides in this belief has given her a sense of worth and belonging; of feeling wanted and loved. Her fight to stay in school, even when facing the pressure to quit and work in the fields, reflect Samphors' understanding of her innate value and purpose. In turn, she positions herself further and further away from poverty and the dangers of slavery.
Standing with LandMine Design as we promote the End It Movement, is a stand for the value of all women. It’s a stand linking arms with them to be brave and overcome rejection and pain. It’s a stand for a cure, and for the prevention of slavery from ever entering into their lives.
- Amreitha Jeeva, Co-founder and Program Developer