Unsung heroines, untold stories

Has it really only been a week since we started attending the official UNCSW events? At times the early-morning-to-late-evening cycle of each day means that you lose track of time entirely.

I’m conscious of not having blogged as much as I would have liked. In part that’s about pressures of time … and I look forward to catching up a bit as things start to wind down slightly towards the end of this week.

But in part, it’s  because again and again the best stories simply can’t be told. Sometimes they’re too personal. Sometimes a woman will be expressing freely here things that she couldn’t express so freely at home … and one can’t risk having someone from home reading her thoughts online. Sometimes to write about people would be to place them in grave danger: indeed, for some sessions, you don’t even find out the names of the participants until you arrive.

So this blogpost is for the unsung heroines whose stories remain untold. They are wonderful stories – stories of using personal experiences of abuse and violence to shape the way organisations offer assistance to survivors … of supporting human rights work in the midst of conflict zones … of taking on powerful vested interests to defend marginalised men’s and women’s rights.

They are the stories of women who have given up privilege to work with the most threatened people … who have themselves been threatened with death … who have lost beloved colleagues because of the work for justice in which they share.

Perhaps as you say your prayers, you can include these women – not knowing their names,  but bringing them before the God who knows all our names and stories.

And be encouraged. Even in places where we may discern few signs of hope from the media coverage, brave people are doing some excellent work.


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