11
Dec

Over the last month the situation in Darfur has been on my mind. This war torn part of Sudan in has seen many refugees escape to camps in neighbouring Chad. The women are caught in a vicious cycle of violence best described as torture. They have virtually no rights and those who keep them from speaking on their own behalf are often living in the same camps. This video below is one of many that highlights their blight.

This month I have been participating in a fund-raising effort that centers on dancing for 15 minutes a day. I really liked the idea of doing something and having it be an uplifting activity that might translate into something uplifting for the women.

One thing that struck me and has stayed with me are the number of reports that describe what is happening to these nameless women. Of course it is pointed out that it is simply too dangerous for them to be named but I can’t help thinking about the other implications of that. Who are we without our name? Is this nameless lumping of these individuals under the generic grouping “women” further robbing them of something essential and personal.

When I danced I gave these women names and faces. Sometimes dancing for Aisha and sometimes for Fareeda or another of her sisters. Thinking of the plight of these women every day for a month left a lasting impression of sadness and anger at the injustice of this situation … yet joy at being part of some small action.

I occasionally hear that people don’t appreciate being labeled as one personality type or another but I have never heard of anyone happy being called the wrong name. Imagine the only reference to your identity being the label woman of Canada or Englishman or American woman.

Recognition of our individuality, our uniqueness always trumps any insight that might be gleaned by looking at common traits of any group. First and foremost we are the only of us – ever and that is what matters.

Category: Personal / Video
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