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America’s Goals for Girls Visits Women In Need

“Goals for Girls uses soccer to teach young women life skills on how to be agents of change, in their own lives and in their communities”.

By connecting girls from different countries and backgrounds with their peers around the world, Goals for Girls is able to address social and health challenges through cultural exchange, service, and soccer.

Goals for Girls Programs Director: Jackie Skinner selected Women in Need to share with their team of 25 American girls from privileged backgrounds, the complex nature of problems faced by India women. Prior to the team’s arrival she spent time seeing the charity’s work for herself.

On Christmas day, we had the pleasure of sharing the festivities with Jackie; this was her response on Facebook:

“Merry Christmas from Nagpur, I had one of the most beautiful Christmas's ever. When I arrived, I was moved beyond measure at the gift they gave me. These mainly Hindu women (many whom have leprosy) and their incredible staff, knowing I was far from home and family on such a special day, surprised me with... Christmas. They decorated their hall with streamers, had a Christmas tree, a Christmas cake, a cross, Christmas music, and even fake snow that we sprayed everywhere. There was dancing, eating, praying, and reading the teachings of Gandhi (a first for me on Christmas:) It was one of the greatest, most thoughtful gifts I have ever received. This will definitely go down as one of the most memorable Christmas's ever! Thank you!"

On New Year’s Eve the Goals for Girls team arrived at the charity’s shelter. They attended a presentation by given by Leah, followed by “Shramadam”, which means the gift of voluntary work. They painted walls and beds, as well as adding decorative designs, to brighten up our buildings.

For the women at our shelter, many of whom have experienced social exclusion through mental illness and HIV, the New Year celebrations were made special by the Goals for Girls members. Our young American guests interacted with the women and even encouraged many of them to dance.

An evening of music, dancing, fireworks and laughter was followed by counting down the end of the old year and the beginning of the new one. Everyone lit Chinese lanterns and made wishes for 2016, releasing their lanterns and wishes into the night sky.

Early next morning, team members were introduced to yoga and meditation, after which they visited Gandhi’s ashram at Sevagram.

We would really like to thank Goals for Girls for donating all the painting materials, and expenses during their visit, and for making Christmas and New Year so memorable.

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