By Carrie R. Murray
COLUMBIA—This spring, Francis Burns United Methodist Women took on a project to make reusable sanitary pads to be distributed to women and girls across the continent of Africa.
At the culmination of four months of planning, organizing, accepting donations and soliciting volunteers from the church and community to help trace, cut and sew fabric, the fruit of our labor was realized.
We thank God for being able to make in excess of 800-plus reusable pads and collect 35-plus ready-made reusable pads, an assortment of ladies’ undergarments, buttons, beads and safety pins. This was enough to fill 140-plus kits that will have a positive and healthy impact on the lives of women and girls beyond our borders.
The Rev. Geneva Stafford blessed the items during our Sunday, July 4, outdoor livestreamed worship service, and the items were collected July 21 by a local volunteer of the Africa Sanitary Pad Project.
We also received 33 handmade children’s masks that we have since donated to the Francis Burns Back to School Campaign in conjunction with the Salvation Army.
We thank Rebecca W. Eleazer for serving as the project coordinator and Vernita Cobbs and Doris McNair who served as trainers.
“Thank you, Francis Burns Family and ladies of the community, for your genuine support of this most worthy project,” Eleazer said. “You have witnessed to The United Methodist Women’s purpose of helping women, children and youth around the world, as well as having promoted our 2020-2021 Program Book’s theme, ‘Knitted Together for God’s Good Work.’
“This project was the essence of sisterhood and working together for the greater good. To God be the glory! Stay tuned for more information about where this initiative may lead us.”
Since education is the key to success, we pray the kits we donated will empower African girls to stay in school, become educated and live healthier lives so they can achieve their dreams of a better and brighter future.
Murray is president of Francis Burns United Methodist Women.