The Oliver chapter of Grandmothers for Africa (Stephen Lewis Foundation) are preparing for their Spring Bling sale on Saturday April 11 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Oliver United Church. Stop by for new and old jewelry, home decor, and women’s accessories. Those who attended last year will already know that exciting buys can be found as well as opportunity to run into many friends from the community. All proceeds are donated to the Stephen Lewis Foundation Grandmothers Campaign to support African grandmothers raising children orphaned by HIV/AIDS.
African grandmothers are heroic women who meet adversity head-on as they raise their voices in song, move their bodies in rhythm and heal themselves and their communities. We celebrate and support them. Stephen Lewis believes we must continue to get funds directly into the hands of their grassroots organizations. They know exactly what to do and how to do it. They simply need the funds to make it happen. They are the ones who make a protective embrace for the orphan children of the African continent.
One of the human rights issues that is of great concern in the developing world is that 1 in 9 girls is married before 15 years of age. Some are only 8 or 9. They experience dangerous early pregnancies, get little education, live in poverty and are subject to HIV infection and domestic violence. Work with grandmothers in Africa includes programs to encourage the end of child marriage. The theme of these programs for growing girls is “Let girls be girls and not brides.”
Grandmothers need help to see the granddaughters they are raising do not join the throng of endangered child brides. These girls need food, shelter, good parenting, love, education. Despite heartache and hardship, it is the grandmothers of Africa that provide the functional homes every child needs. Their courage and resilience is inspirational.
So come to the Spring Bling, have some fun, try and get lucky with a door prize and know that the proceeds will help show African grandmothers that we are determined to be with them every step of the way!
Pictured are participants at last year’s Spring Bling. It shows Grandmothers for Africa (yellow is Oliver, white is Penticton, blue is Osoyoos) with some of the jewelry and other bling on sale. Past President Sue James (in yellow) stands at front centre between Linda Nunweiler and Heather Fink (seated) and new President Mavis Grant is also in yellow to her left.