Holiday Celebration 2012 - Women of the World Tea Party

Women of the World celebrated its second year and more importantly, the clients' continued success, with its annual Holiday Celebration Tea Party.  Over one-hundred refugees braved the first snow of the season to join Women of the World directors, officers, and volunteers for food, tea, and a chance to celebrate the successes of the past year and to talk about the aspirations for the new year.Celebrating with a Refugee FamilyThe successes were myriad, including:

  • finding jobs;
  • developing English skills;
  • learning to drive;
  • navigating Salt Lake City transportation to get to stores, school, hospitals;
  • but mostly, having a voice and confidence.

In order to get a raffle ticket for gifts generously donated by members of the community, Women of the World clients had to update their contact information and fill out what they wish for 2013.  The majority of respondents requested more classes in English.  Women of the World hopes to fulfill this request in the new year with a revamping of its English program based in Equipped for the Future (EFF) Language Literacy Standards.  Some of the other requests, as written, included:

I wish peace for my country.  I wish my son like our new home.  I like my husband be accept at University of Utah.  I like to finish my higher studying.  I like to have a job and my own house.I wish for speakers (big one).My wish for 2013 is to start modeling, have a driver license, and a car.  My biggest wish for 2013 is to stop the war in Congo.I wish to learn English and working as my health is beginning to get better and to bring a new car cause my car is old.  A new sofa.  I need a teacher to help me with English.

Everyone had a very enjoyable time in working together and developing friendships.  Women of the World would like to thank its volunteers for setup, recording information, and cooking, BYU's Students for International Development (SID) for setting up a craft table for the kids.  Also thank you to the community for their generous donations for the raffle, and especially to Sharon and Amy for the beautiful gifts of hygiene products that every family received.As we start 2013, Women of the World is heartened by the love and generosity that its clients show toward the volunteers that help them and will continue to grow its volunteer base to impact more refugee women by "giving them a voice and being their friend."

Women of the World Grand Opening Tea Party

On Saturday at 2 pm, the Women of the World held their grand opening celebration for their clients that included over sixty refugee women from various countries in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.  The event allowed the women to relax with a cup of tea and have a conversation with women from a different background while their children were playing with Women of the World volunteers.The women shared in a light afternoon snack and tea before they were informed of the vision of the Women of the World Organization by the founder and president, Samira Harnish.  Samira's speech contained an inspirational story of her struggles to achieve her dream of education and become an engineer and how she found her way back to the service of women in need.  Samira shared how the mission of WoW, to support women of all nations to achieve their dreams, was "not hyperbole, but possible.  That women's dreams of education, employment, and entrepreneurship could be achieved if we "put our hands together to break through the obstacles in front of us."  Samira went on to discuss the programs that will at first help refugee women to resettle in America (home visits, transportation, medical, and ESL classes) and then develop their skills for employment, educational assistance, or entrepreneurship.  Finally, Samira called us all to service, "to help the woman next to you, and women all over the world, to shine."The fun had just started as the Women of the World kicked off their service to the community by having a free drawing for fivebeautiful blankets donated by Amy Wylie.  The Board Of Directors of Women of the World donated tea cups filled with chocolates to those in attendance and treat bags for their children.  Finally, the mothers received a generous donation of clothing and shoes for their children.  These clothes were again donated by Amy Wylie.The Women of the World would like to thank all of those in attendance and all of those that donated their time, efforts, and gifts to this wonderful event.  We have just started but we are confident that with hard work and a desire to improve the status of all women, we will achieve our dreams.