Students held a cake stall to fundraise for the Abide Family Centre in Uganda on 17th March, 2015. Mrs Karen Moss, Arden’s Social Justice Group Coordinator, explained: “Having spent a number of weeks raising awareness at assemblies about the plight of Ugandan women and the heart breaking reality of giving up their children to orphanages due to their overwhelming poverty, the Social Justice Group set about trying to create change for these people. The Arden community was called upon to “Bake a Difference” by either making cakes and/or buying cakes at our cake stall. The response from Arden students was over whelming, with the stall raising $544.00 for the Abide Family Centre. This money will go a long way to help the centre continue its programs of women’s education and skills development, as well as providing micro financing for women, which in turn will enable Ugandan women to reclaim the ability to care for and raise their own children.” She continued: “It was indeed both encouraging and humbling watching the students in Arden’s Social Justice Group plan and implement such a successful fundraising venture. I am incredibly proud of their compassion, servant heartedness and commitment to reducing suffering in our world.”
Alessandra Dimarco (Year 11), a keen member of the Social Justice Group, has begun presenting a series of brief assembly speeches to students on the international plight of women. She commented: “The truth is that women in developing countries carry much of the load when it comes to poverty and injustices. This is due to several factors including discriminative laws and restricted opportunities available to women…Women are at the core of poverty cycle. Empower women, break the poverty cycle. The Social Justice Group team this year are supporting Abide Family Centre, who works to empower mothers in their families. Last year we fundraised to support women with micro loans through The Good Return Organisation allowing them to buy sewing machines, or goats, or something that will them give them the opportunity to create a living for themselves. These women have now paid back in full their loans meaning these women now have a sustainable income and are empowered to break the poverty cycle!”
The Abide Family Centre is an organisation which is attempting to empower women so that they can be economically independent, thus reducing the number of children who are placed into orphanages, even though their mother and sometimes fathers are still alive. The Abide group believes that all children, where possible, should be raised in a family environment. The group therefore focuses upon training and education of women so that their employment chances are improved, thus being able to care for their own children.