Dear Friends and Partners, This week the month of December begins. It is a month of anticipation and hope – a month where many around the world celebrate the advent of Christmas – it’s a time when we plan our giving for others and wait in excitement to see what our gifts will be. It is also a time of refection of the year past and looking forward to the New Year that will come. December is an exciting month. In Cambodia, December is just another month – there is no Christmas – no anticipation. And yet within our Tabitha families every month is one full of anticipation. The family of Lon Hout knows of this excitement. Lon and his wife have seven children – they live meanly in a tiny hut shared with his parents.
Dear friends and partners, Yesterday was one of those days that stay in my mind for quite some time. Yesterday I met with 32 families who are in their first and second savings cycles. What made the visit so memorable was the act of stepping back to those difficult years when we began Tabitha. Getting to the project area was a test in patience – unlike before – traffic has increased a hundred fold and just getting out of the city is a test of its own. Travelling to the community we bounced down a bumpy path until we were confronted by a flood of water. No motorbikes, no cars could enter – just taking off our shoes and walking through thigh high water, stubbing our toes on hidden rocks, sliding uncontrollably in glutinous mud.
Dear friends and partners, did you know that October is Breast Cancer awareness month? You and I live with so many blessings – so many choices – and we have these blessings because people before us fought for these privileges (rights-as some would say). Today I want to ask each of you to claim this privilege and get a mammogram done – or get your spouse, mother, auntie, and daughter to get it done. You see, the thing about breast cancer is this – the earlier we detect – the greater the chances of survival. People before us and our close ones now, believe that each of us is beautiful and precious – worthy of making this choice.