BRAMPTON, Ontario — (CANADIAN CHRISTIAN NEWS SERVICE) — Every day women are promoting holistic and sustainable change in remote areas of the world. Whether teaching valuable vocational skills to help families generate income, leading initiatives to prevent and end human trafficking or developing literacy programs in some of the least reached, least resourced areas of the world, they are influential and inspiring leaders working in ways others cannot. They sacrificially serve in areas where injustice is commonplace and life is difficult. Partners International Canada wants to celebrate these amazing women who are leading these critically important projects that share the restorative power of the Gospel.
A clinical psychologist, Singh serves as the director of Mahima Care Homes in India. Care homes work to ensure that minor aged victims of the sex trade are rescued from brothels in the Sonagachi district and reintegrated into society with their self-worth restored from counselling, vocational training and education. Prior to becoming the director, Singh recognized that preventing re-trafficking was a necessity to ensure true rehabilitation for victims. Her vision was successful and Mahima Care Homes has become the government of India’s model for restoring victims of human trafficking into safe communities. Many of the young girls and women Singh has served have gone on to testify in court against traffickers, resulting in 24 convictions.
Originally from Burlington, Ontario, Thiessen’s life was changed following a trip to Haiti. Touched by the suffering of so many children, Thiessen decided to leave her career as a successful personal trainer and work full time to support a Partners International ministry partner, Haiti Christian Schools. As the project development coordinator, Thiessen serves hundreds of children on the island of La Gonave where quality education and targeted literacy initiatives are helping to break the generational cycle of poverty.
In the southeastern regions of Nigeria, Umune serves with TETMI where she organizes conferences for women focusing on health promotion and well-being based on the holistic power of the gospel. These conferences help to change long standing culturally held beliefs that illness comes from the gods and cannot be treated. Umune works with attendees to encourage preventative measures as well as practical treatments. The goal of the conference is to share the complete wholeness that faith in Christ can truly bring. “Reach a man, and you have reached an individual” says Umune. “Reach a mother, and you will reach an entire family.”
As part of the Quechua minority people group in Bolivia, Nelly has the unique ability to work effectively in remote villages of the altiplano. To reach these villages, Nelly frequently rides in the back of a truck in -4C weather for hours at a time. She teaches villagers how to read in their local language through using the Bible. In addition, Nelly is able to train villagers in basic agriculture, animal husbandry and health promotion including sanitation. Her work has been so successful that she now receives petitions from other villages across Bolivia asking for her to come to their village and share her program.
About Partners International:
A Christian ministry focused on equipping and empowering locally-led Christian leaders that specialize in holistic development since 1963. Partners International works to bring Canadians into partnership with local Christian ministries that are advancing the kingdom of God in some of the least reached, least resourced areas of the world.
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For interviews or to receive individual stories:
Luke McKee | firstname.lastname@example.org | 905.458.1202 ext. 239
– Woman Working
– Nelly – Quechua Literacy Program
– Smita Singh Sharing at PI Canada’s Hope in Action Tour