What does it mean to feel safe? For many of us, we don't think about it until we've lost it. What I learned most from my work with these young women here in Nepal is that many women in this world do not feel safe in their daily lives, and worse yet, have never felt safe.
Our two groups (volunteers and Nepalese women) did a number of art games and exercises during the week structured to take us all deeper into and with ourselves as well as our relationship to our outside world. After each practice, we would share, in the large group of 25, or smaller groups. I think the greatest shock for me was the sharing on this topic. None of the young women who chose to share about the "safety" exercise felt safe in their world, and had never felt safe. They gave us pieces of their lives and their history, and through many tears, sobs, and much heartfelt stories, we followed each other through this very emotionally wrenching afternoon.
As women, none of us are truly safe until all of us feel safe in the world we live in. How can we each be proactive in creating and sustaining safety for ourselves, our families and our communities? What does "safety" mean to you?