Hope’s Doorway, a local non-profit organization in Durango, hopes to open doors to women and children in Zambia through access to education, both financially and physically. This story is sponsored by FASTSIGNS and Service Master Restore
In 2014, Sherry Ketner went on a medical aid trip to Zambia. And during the trip, she was struck by how many girls, as young, as 10 years old were forced into prostitution to keep their families fed. When she returned to Durango, Ketner founded hope doorway as a way to raise attention about the issue and fund education, medical care and supplies. You're watching the Local News Network brought to you by Servicemaster Restore and Fastsigns, I'm Hannah Robertson.
That's the best way to help. And it ended up being child sponsorship. They can speak into that child's life. They can encourage them, and just be a support for them as they continue and complete their secondary school which is our high school. Out of the very first group of children, there were 23 students that had been out of school for many years. And they were rallied back together and encouraged to return to school. And so here in America, we ended up sponsoring, finding sponsors and sponsored 23 students from child marriage and prostitution back to school.
The Hope's Doorway Child Sponsorship Programs works the same way as larger international programs like Compassion Child. But with a small town touch, Ketner and other Hope's Doorway members travel regularly to Zambia, and are in contact with their partners in the villages where the children are. So as a sponsor, you get real updates on the child's progress.
Hope's Doorway is partnered with Shield of Love. So it's sponsoring students first and foremost, get an education, that is $39 a month that we do sponsoring. So that's one way, and that's again, their education. So school supplies, teacher resources. There's a build that does not have a roof on it. And it's, you know, it's almost completed, needs windows and it needs furnishing school supplies again, teacher resources. And so, that's one way again, that Shield of Love and Hope's Doorway are trying to help the community.
Hope's Doorway and Shield of Love have also started a program for women in the community, who may not have been able to finish school, giving them applicable skills and training so they can provide for their families through the goods they make.
Some of the sponsored children's mothers or grandmothers, have been invited into a new program that Shield of Love has and it's with empowering women. And so what they've done is they've taken any woman who has a sponsored child, and they are trained on on entrepreneurship, trained in business and then gifted with funds to start their own business. Most of the women are doing vegetables, selling vegetables, selling coal.
The goal of Hope's Doorway is to give every a child the opportunity to live in a safe environment, with access to education, healthcare, and enhanced life skills for a sustainable future. Through sponsoring children's education, providing skills, training for women in rural communities, through the Empower Women's Project, and their continued partnership with Shield of Love, Hope's Doorway and Ketner hope to continue that mission.
Sponsorship. It gives a child of very, very low poverty an opportunity to attend school. And then potentially raise up their countries standards through education.
To learn more about Hope's Doorway or to explore opportunities to get involved, visit the website at hopesdoorway.org. Thanks for watching this edition of the Local News Network. I'm Hannah Robertson.