On Friday, September 10th, we went to the City Club of Cleveland for a program wherein Ms. Cynthia Connolly, Director of Programming, interviewed Ms. Karen Sherman who is now the President of the Akilah Institute which is a non-profit college for women Kigali, Rwanda and the first college for women in that country.
Ms. Sherman is also the author of “Brick by Brick—Building Hope and Opportunity for Women Survivors Everywhere” a copy of which we purchased on behalf of Ms. Margaret Wong.
As her biography states, Ms. Sherman “has spent her life advocating for women in war-torn and transitional countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Congo, Nigeria, Sudan, Kosovo, and the former Soviet Union.” Moreover, she believes that “championing women’s education and economic participation has the power to transform the lives of women and the future of families, communities, societies, and, ultimately, the world.”
We, of course, talked to her about immigration to the United States and she indicated that she is very supportive of welcoming newcomers, she recognizes that we can only “airlift” a comparatively small number of people out of intrepid circumstances. Therefore, the best pathway might be for men and women to work together, along with assistance from international powers, to rebuild their countries from the bottom up via a grassroots movement.
Appropriately, one of the community partners of today’s City Club program was Journey Center for Safety and Healing which “provides services that foster safety and healing for those affected by child abuse and domestic violence; and prevents abuse through education, advocacy, and systemic change.”