Submitted by FCJ Learning and Development Center, Manila
#Women Make Change was the theme of this year’s Women’s Month Celebration held on 23rd March at the FCJ Center. The FCJ Learning and Development Center was founded by the Sisters FCJ in 2002 and it is located close to one of the dumpsites in Manila. The Center serves more than 750 families in the area and offers a variety of services.
Women are very often the ones who do indeed make change. Why? Because in poor communities they are the ones who constantly struggle to make sure their families are fed and clothed, have the medicine they need when they are sick and go to school regularly. It falls to the mothers to make the best use of the meager family resources, to be inventive and diligent in finding a way forward for their family, sometimes in the face of great difficulties.
What a joy it was to see these women celebrating! They had organized a simple but most enjoyable program that was attended by many people. There were dance presentations, games and lots of laughter and fun. To highlight the plight of many women who suffer financial and emotional abuse, they interspersed the program with short sketches. After each of these the presenters led brief conversations with the participants to elicit their views and suggestions as to how to deal with these situations and bring about much needed change. The program ended with everyone joining in a lively dance!
We still have a long way to go before women have equal rights and are respected and valued for who they are. Each year women’s month provides us with an opportunity to take publicly another step towards this goal, and to honor the vast numbers of brave and resilient women who daily “make change” to bring about a better future for their children.