Songs of Thankfulness

Woman at WoW center in DR Congo
The future looks bright for this woman and many others at the WoW Center

Songs of Thankfulness

Celebrating with a precious group of women who’ve found hope and healing

Dear Friends,

I have just returned from my first trip to Africa as director of the Victims of Sexual Violence Ministry. I was fortunate enough to visit the Women of Wellness (WoW) Center, in Goma, DR Congo, for the graduation ceremony of quite a few talented and truly special young women. This place is filled with treasures of inestimable worth; beautiful women who have overcome great hardship, poverty and oftentimes tragedy. But they never cease to inspire me with their tenacity as they face each new day with thankfulness.

Upon my arrival at the WoW Center, I was greeted with enthusiastic songs of thankfulness, complete with a hand-painted sign to welcome me as a thank-you for the most recent self-sufficiency projects that Heaven’s Family’s donors helped make happen (solar panels for electricity and clean drinking water). But the party had only just begun! A celebration had been planned in advance to bless the graduates and fill them with a sense of dignity and worth.

Women at WoW center giving warm welcome
We were welcomed with joy, singing, and this sign of thanks

Lasting two whole days, these women were pampered with facials and pedicures, ending in a slumber party—but not before taking an exciting boat ride! Many of these girls had never ridden in a boat before, and their facial expressions and outbursts of excitement were a delight to watch! It is hard to convey the joy we experienced during these carefree hours; it is something they will cherish always, and never forget—I know I won’t!

Women at center getting facials, at left; enjoying first boat ride, at right
At left, facials with Judy Allard; at right, their very first boat ride

As children, most of the women did not attend school due to severe poverty and war. But now they have completed training that helps them to see that they have great value, gives them the ability to support themselves, and provides them with hope for a brighter future. Thank you to our donors for investing in the lives of these incredible women.


Patty Forney
Director, Victims of Sexual Violence Ministry

In case you missed it…

The former director of the Victims of Sexual Violence Ministry had the opportunity to give a short presentation at Heaven’s Family’s 2017 Annual Staff Conference in February, in which she explained some of the exciting ways we’re advancing Jesus’ kingdom around the globe in 2017. Please watch!

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