After returning from a recent trip to India, our Executive Vice President, Daniel Rickett, reminded us what we’re all about with the following story:
As the oarsmen paddled toward the island school children came to greet us with song and dance. The children were clean and dressed, a stark contrast from the first time our Area Director, Cherylann, visited the village three years ago.
To honor our visit the school teacher had prepared a program. We crowded into a one room mud building, children nearly on top of each other but all smiling and wide eyed. The foreign guests, me and my colleagues, squeezed to the front of the room and took our seats. The children sang and sang and sang, while we sweat and sweat and sweat under the summer heat. The children performed a play and then came the dance.
Three tiny girls climbed over their classmates to the front of the room. Standing before us waiting for the music to begin, the child on the left panted with determination.
The music began and they danced as traditional Indians do. The girl on the left was superlative. She danced as if she had practiced for years.
We exist for this girl and the six hundred million at-risk girls like her around the world. With just a little help and opportunity, she was given a chance to do exactly what God created her to do: she danced.
While we do educational, economic, antitrafficking, and advocacy work, they all revolve around this idea: God has made each girl with tremendous potential. We are about freeing and empowering her so that she can fearlessly be who she was created to be.