This week was special and led up to the celebration of a very special young lady nicknamed Pachi.
Pachi is the youngest daughter of a widow we support with our monthly rent stipend program.
Uncommon where I grew up, it’s tradition in her family to celebrate a woman’s coming of age with close family, friends and more food than anyone can eat. Their cultural traditions aim to recognize and encourage young women by highlighting how treasured they are.
With the help of people who donated online this month and Bangkok’s Newsong Church we extended the celebration with Pachi’s family on Sunday.
When I met Pachi for the first time, two things struck me about her. First, she was a young girl with bright eyes and a beautiful smile. I sat down with her and attempted to read a story with her in basic english. Pachi was about 9 at the time and I quickly realized that while she knew the letters in each word, she could not read any of them.
With the opportunity to study only one day a week, Pachi had never learned to read in English.
Since meeting Pachi the first time, we’ve come to sponsor her family and I put pressure on the family members who could read English to teach her. With the promise of a special reward, I’d always check to see if she had been practicing whenever I visited the family.
Today Pachi is no longer the illiterate young girl I met a few years ago and we spent the afternoon celebrating her blossoming into (literate) womanhood.
What would the world be like if young women were valued and celebrated everywhere?