Healing Hands of Joy is a 501(c)(3) organization that exists to bring hope, happiness and a second chance to women affected by obstetric fistula. Obstetric Fistula is a double sorrow. A woman loses her baby in long, painful, obstructed labor and then wakes up to the horror of incontinence. A woman with obstetric fistula is often abandoned by her husband, ostracized by her family and village and left to live the rest of her life alone and ashamed. Fortunately there is a cure and many women in Ethiopia are treated, but after living years in this condition and being married at an early age, women recovered from fistula have few options for their future. Join us as we fight to end fistula and give these women a brighter future.
GIVE JOY THIS CHRISTMAS
HHOJ has decorated our very own virtual Christmas tree, but we need your help to put presents underneath it. Plus, all qualifying donations made before December 20 will receive a Christmas card (pictured left) featuring the photography of Max Robinson! Keep the card for yourself, or use it to let friends or family members know that you made a donation in their honor. The more you donate, the more cards you receive! Get one card with a $50 donation, two cards with a $200 donation, three cards with a $500 donation, or five cards with a $1,000 donation.
"One Woman, Many Voices" follows the inspiring story of Beriha Reda, a woman from rural Ethiopia who experienced severe childbirth injuries and courageously travels to the US to share her story at the United Nations to prevent more women from suffering the same fate.
HHOJ IS FIGHTING FISTULA WITH THE UNITED NATIONS
In May, the UNFPA celebrated the first International Day to End Obstetric Fistula at United Nations Headquarters in New York. Safe Motherhood Ambassador, Beriha, and Healing Hands of Joy's Ethiopia Project Director, Frewaini, were invited from Ethiopia to join the celebrations. Beriha was a keynote speaker at the main event and shared her amazing story with people from around the world. HHOJ also hosted an African wine tasting evening, raising funds to support over 40 women in Ethiopia!
NATALIE IMBRUGLIA AND HHOJ TEAM UP TO FIGHT FISTULA
Obstetric Fistula is a condition that is currently affecting the lives of over 2 million women around the world. Australian pop-singer Natalie Imbruglia is an active advocate against fistula. Natalie was recently in New York City supporting UNFPA's celebration of the first official International Day to End Fistula. Teaming up with the Draw Shop she created this incredible awareness video. We are excited to have partnerned with her on this video, letting people know about the problem and how they can make a difference. Watch the video now and be informed, join the movement, and fight fistula. Click below to learn more about Natalie (www.natalieimbruglia.com) and the Draw Shop (http://thedrawshop.com).
Check out Iris Fistula Project's short film about Healing Hands of Joy and the Mekele Center.
DOWNLOAD OUR 2012 ANNUAL REPORT
Take a look at our 2012 Annual Report to see some of the amazing things that Healing Hands of Joy has been a part of this past year.
To download right click the picture to the left or here and select "Save as..."
JOIN OUR FILM FIGHTS FISTULA CAMPAIGN
Healing Hands of Joy is excited to announce the launch of Film Fights Fistula a new awareness and fundraising campaign. Thanks to the support of PBS award-winning science series, NOVA, YOU can host your own screening of the Emmy Award winning documentary A Walk to Beautiful, produced by Engel Entertainment. This inspiring film follows the journeys of five Ethiopian women who suffer from fistula as they seek a cure. For more information click here.
Take a look at some of the attention that Healing Hands of Joy is getting on Ethiopian television.
NOW, 100% OF CONTRIBUTIONS GO DIRECTLY TO THE SAFE MOTHERHOOD AMBASSADORS PROGRAM
Our Angel Donor, Bill Bloomfield, recognizes the importance and success of the mission of Healing Hands of Joy and its operations. Healing Hands of Joy is thrilled that Bill decided from the beginning to believe in the vision of helping women with obstetric fistula as its first major donor and is a member of the Healing Hands of Joy Board of Directors. Now Bill wants to ensure that every dollar that is donated to Healing Hands goes directly to helping women in Ethiopia by becoming our Angel Donor and donating the entire U.S. operations budget. An active leader on the community, national and international stage, Bill is our hero and playing a major role in eradicating obstetric fistula through Healing Hand’s of Joy’s programs.
LISA LING SPEAKS OUT AGAINST FISTULA
In this day and age, fistula is an ordeal that no one should have to endure - the wonder of child birth becomes a curse, turning a woman or girl into a modern day leper. Healing Hands of Joy is a unique program that gives them back their dignity and a meaningful place in their communities.
- Lisa Ling -
On Friday night, September 23rd, investigative journalist and host of Our America on the Oprah Winfrey Network teamed up with the UNFPA to support the work of Healing Hands of Joy, a non-profit working in Ethiopia to empower former fistula patients and prevent fistula. The evening featured a special screening of Oxygen Network’s film The Bride Was Seven where Lisa Ling investigated child marriage in Ethiopia. Healing Hands of Joy’s Founder and Executive Director, Allison Shigo along with HHOJ board member and producer of The Bride Was Seven, Amy Bucher were on hand to introduce the organization’s work training former fistula patients as Safe Motherhood Ambassador to prevent fistula in their communities and lead sustainable lives.
Lisa Ling read a moving poem she wrote while in Ethiopia about the devastating effects of child marriage on young girls including traumatic rape and unwanted childbirth injuries such as obstetric fistula. Lisa Ling emphasized that Healing Hands of Joyis one of the only organizations in Ethiopia filling the gap in providing social reintegration for women who have suffered from fistula.
Learn about the amazing way Healing Hands of Joy is helping end fistula in Ethiopia. HHOJ's Safe Motherhood Ambassadors is a unique program that empowers women to save lives and heal communities.
//WHAT WE DO
SAFE MOTHERHOOD AMBASSADORS
To empower former fistula patients and save mother’s lives we’ve developed a one-month curriculum to train former fistula patients as Safe Motherhood Ambassadors. They are taught basic maternal health skills, communication, and in some cases literacy training to monitor and promote the message of safe delivery to pregnant women in their villages.
Safe Motherhood Ambassadors provide voluntary support for maternal health in their community to save children’s lives and prevent childbirth injuries such as obstetric fistula. They will educate their neighbors about the causes of fistula and how it can be prevented.
We are providing counseling to women who have been traumatized by being ostracized by their communities for having fistula. Many fistula patients need to know they are loved and have a purpose in live and Healing Hands of Joy helps these women move past the shame and stigma of having fistula so they can lead joyful, productive lives.
Our program also includes income-generating skills training to support their small business dreams and empower former fistula patients economically. We provide SMA graduates with a small start-up fund to help them lead self-sustainable lives.