How much hope is enough?

Today I heard two stories I want to share.

This morning I heard a 20 year old talk about a project she’s running called The 139 project (check it out on facebook).  It involves photographing people across the UK (and, I guess, beyond) holding a piece of A4 paper with a message on it for women living in poverty around the world (a disproportionately large number compared to the number of men).  You can take a photo of yourself and upload it to join in.  The messages say all kinds of things from “You are not forgotten” to “Your strength softens our hearts”.  The photos are going to be printed onto fabric and made into huge quilts which will go to the British government to campaign for fulfilment of the Millennium Development Goals, and then to women’s empowerment groups in poor countries around the world.

Jenny, who runs it (no, not me, believe it or not I am older than 20 now…) is full of passion and hope, which is infectious.

And then I read my friend Hannah’s blog about her last day in Mumbai, where she visited a brothel with an organisation working to free trafficked women.  In that one district she was told there were 15 brothels housing 75,000 women. Yes I typed that right.  The organisation she was with helps about 25 women out a year. How on earth do you keep hold of faith and hope in the midst of that? I can’t begin to imagine.  Please read her blog here.