SowHope volunteers at the IWD event

SowHope celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8 by offering a public screening Disney’s Queen of Katwe. Although it was a beautiful spring day – the sunniest and warmest to date in Grand Rapids, Michigan – more than 160 people supported women by attending the event. Queen of Katwe is about the struggles a widowed mother and her children living in the slum of Katwe in Kampala, Uganda, must endure. Based on the raves from guests afterward, Queen of Katwe’s inspiring message of hope resonated with all attendees, regardless of their age.

Following the movie, people were treated to a panel discussion that featured Rebecca Deng, author of her memoir titles What They Meant for Evil; and Fridah Kanini, a SowHope Board of Director and businesswoman who was born and raised in Kenya by a singer mother (see our Winter 2020 newsletter). Rebecca is one of the Lost Girls of Sudan who was relocated to Michigan as a fifteen-year-old orphan. Both women discussed their childhoods and how the movie accurately portrayed life in a refugee camp – especially the mother’s devotion to her children. Like Phiona, the main character in the movie Rebecca’s life changed when a caring adult noticed her resolve to get an education.

Thank you to the wonderful volunteers and supporters who made our 2020 International Women’s Day celebration a success.