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    Tending to new growth for Rohingya women

    Day 307

    Growing Power

    We’re back in the Rohingya widow’s block with our partner Anando, supporting women by amplifying their talents and voices!

    One of my favorite things about being back here was spending hours of time having conversations, learning from the women about who they are, what their life is like, and their hopes for the future.

    It was during these conversations that I learned that many of them had gardens and fields back home, where they grew all sorts of fruits and vegetables to sell as well as to supplement their meals. A lot of women worked alongside the men of the household tending to these gardens.

    This was one of the biggest things they missed about their home, along with the open fields and ample space to roam around.

    While we couldn’t relocate them into homes with open fields, we definitely COULD bring gardening tools and seeds and saplings to them so that they could find a bit of comfort in what was once familiar.

    We were even able to provide training in best practices around cultivating vegetables in Cox Bazar soil, and appropriateness in ever-changing weather patterns.

    The best part was seeing the smiles on the women’s faces as they learned new techniques, but voiced their own expertise when needed. It was easy to see that they were reminiscing about their gardens, but determined to create their own in their new homes.

    Shaufika, the block leader, confirmed this. “You brought some of the best parts of my past life into my new home. We will grow these fruits and vegetables with love and care.”


    Meet Shamaila! Shamaila is part of the Global Connections team based out of Minneapolis. She supports partnerships and fundraising for Alight’s initiatives with the diaspora, LGBTIQ+ refugees, Rohingya women, and beyond! She is deeply passionate about supporting the most marginalized communities worldwide – those living in the shadows — to reclaim their voice and has found Changemakers 365 a powerful tool to support this.



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