By JO STANLEY
If you’re anything like me, your day today will have consisted of rushing from kinder drop off, to gym, to work, to grocery shopping, to kinder pick up, to swimming lessons, to home, to cook dinner, to more work, to bath time, to bed.
And if you’re anything like me, you would have dressed for style rather than comfort so by the end of the day, just before you fall into a blessed exhausted slumber, your feet are KILLING you!
But as you’re sitting on the edge of your bed rubbing your aching soles, I want you to imagine a different life.
I want you to imagine Ang who lives in Laos. Ang is a single mother of three, who agreed to wear a pedometer for international aid organization, CARE.
On her first day, Ang walked 95,511 steps. That’s around 60 km. In one day. The total for her week was 220 kms. That’s just collecting rice, water, firewood. Basic needs for her family, needs that prevent her from earning an income, and entrap her in more poverty.
Now imagine Fikere who is 16 and lives in Ethiopia. She is responsible for collecting enough water for her family to drink, cook and wash with every day.
Until recently Fikere had to walk many hours each week to the river, which is often muddy, contaminated and caused her family to be sick, and meant that that she missed at least three classes of school a week.
If Fikere was prevented from going to school, she too would have been trapped in a cycle of poverty like Ang.
And just before you fall into bed and let the last of your day float away, imagine 12-year-old Sopheap in Cambodia, whose journey through a forest every day for firewood terrifies her, because of fear of ghosts and attackers.
I don’t know about you, but I’m heading straight back in to my daughter’s bedroom to give her beautiful sleeping head another kiss. Thank God she is safe.
I’m a daughter to a single mother, sister to two sisters, and mother of a little girl. I have been raised, guided, loved and inspired by women my whole life.