Posted on September 30, 2016

Violence against women and children is a common phenomenon in Zimbabwe. It occurs, both in the private and public spheres, catalysed by a number of factors that stem from the way in which society is structured. These factors include culture, tradition, religion, politics, and the economy. These factors contribute to shaping societal perceptions of why violence against women occurs, how society perceives the victim and the perpetrator, and how society responds to address cases of violence against women. Amidst all the other forms of violence against women such as wife battering and ritual killings, rape and other forms of sexual violence are becoming increasing social ills in Zimbabwean society.

In 2009 a group of courageous rape survivors organized The Doors of Hope Development Trust to address the psychological needs of women who underwent a series of human rights violations and to help them develop their own potential to handle post-traumatic events of rape or sexual abuse through Trauma Healing Workshops and group awareness discussions.

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The Tree of Life (ToL), a Zimbabwean non-profit that provides group based approaches to healing and empowering survivors of organized violence and torture, has supported Doors of Hope as they emerge into a more self-sustaining group. Tree of Life is facilitated by survivors themselves and uses the tree as a metaphor to provide a framework for understanding the trauma experience as well as strategies for empowerment. During the last two years the ToL has been working carefully and cautiously with Doors of Hope and by the end of last year had trained four of their senior members in conducting healing workshops. Currently the Doors of Hope is comprised of 5 volunteer staff and a membership of approximately 375 women from around Zimbabwe.

With WDP’s support, Doors of Hope will be one step closer to extending its outreach to other women survivors through trauma healing workshops, sensitization/advocacy meetings around the country and capacity-building/organization development training for Doors of Hope staff.

Tree of Life/Doors of Hope is a World Day of Prayer grant recipient

One Day, Many Ways to Worship: Communication Ideas

Posted on April 15, 2013

WDP planners put a lot of time and energy into getting the word out!  So many of you use the press release and PSA templates to place ads in your home newspapers or on local TV and radio.  In what other ways do you let folks know that WDP is coming?  Share your ideas in … Continue reading One Day, Many Ways to Worship: Communication Ideas

One Day, Many Ways to Worship: New Ideas

Posted on April 14, 2013

Women who plan World Day of prayer have been hard at work investing in new ways to share the experience.  Check out some of their ideas below, and write yours into the comments box below! Many services were held on days other than March 1.  Janet Candle, in Bonne Terre, MO wrote in to let … Continue reading One Day, Many Ways to Worship: New Ideas

WDP USA Invited to Santa Verena Charity 12th Annual Banquet

Posted on April 13, 2013

Santa Verena Charity is a non-profit organization with a mission to fight poverty through programs providing humanitarian assistance in Egypt, the mother country of the Coptic Orthodox Church.  They also serve in Sudan, Kenya, Brazil, Mexico and Hawaii through short-term trips and projects. For more information about Santa Verena Charity, visit: Santa Verena Charity was … Continue reading WDP USA Invited to Santa Verena Charity 12th Annual Banquet

WDP USA Board Meets

Posted on April 12, 2013

The WDP USA Board met April 12-14 in New York City. During the weekend meeting, Kathleen Clark was honored for her years of service to WDP USA as Assistant Treasurer. Kathleen (pictured above, front row, first from the left) has been instrumental in making connections for WDP in Iowa and throughout the US! On Saturday, … Continue reading WDP USA Board Meets

WDP at Ecumenical Advocacy Days!

Posted on April 10, 2013

Over 800 people from more than 55 Christian denominations met in Washington, D.C. April 5-9 for the 10th Annual Ecumenical Advocacy Days Conference.  Ecumenical Advocacy Days is a movement of the ecumenical Christian community, and its recognized partners and allies, grounded in biblical witness and  shared traditions of justice, peace and the integrity of creation. … Continue reading WDP at Ecumenical Advocacy Days!

One Day, Many Ways to Pray: Materials

Posted on April 09, 2013

Many of you do things to adapt and change the materials for WDP to fit your community.  This year, we provided an online “bare-bones” template to help put your bulletin together.  Despite some wrinkles, especially with downloads, many of you expressed gratitude for the online options for ordering this year.  Rest assured that we are … Continue reading One Day, Many Ways to Pray: Materials

One Day, Many Ways to Pray: Activities

Posted on April 05, 2013

Different communities plan and adapt activities during the Meditation time in the WDP Service for their own congregations preferences and comfort levels. What did your planning team try?  Let us know in the comment section below! Salida, CO WDP Planning Team at St. Joseph Catholic Church. Photo by Jean Hanfelt. “We did the optional activity—each … Continue reading One Day, Many Ways to Pray: Activities

One Day, Many Ways to Worship: WDP Speakers

Posted on April 01, 2013

WDP Planners reach out in their communities to invite a variety of interesting speakers to present during the Mediation time in the service.  Here are a few ideas from around the country.  Did your community bring in an interesting speaker?  We’d love to hear about it–add your voice in the comments section below! “Sister Bonnie … Continue reading One Day, Many Ways to Worship: WDP Speakers

MPANZI at the UN Commission on the Status of Women

Posted on March 20, 2013

On Friday, March 8, Andrea and Meagan, staff of WDP USA, attended an event sponsored by Mpanzi, held as part of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.  Mpanzi was a 2012 WDP USA grant recipient, so we were eager to hear their stories firsthand.  Mpanzi is dedicated to promoting peace and development … Continue reading MPANZI at the UN Commission on the Status of Women

World Day of Prayer at the UN Commission on the Status of Women

Posted on March 06, 2013

We know that women have a long history of working together across denominations to pool their strengths, skills and resources.  One organization that embodies this history is World Day of Prayer (WDP).  Working in over 170 countries, World Day of Prayer invites women to join together in solidarity of prayer and action every year on … Continue reading World Day of Prayer at the UN Commission on the Status of Women