November 21, 2020
Today, 9th April 2019, our building team commenced the building of The Pearl Safe Haven. That single step is HUGE and we are excited about the journey ahead. Our mission is to deliver the safe haven this year and house our first 25 survivors. There are currently no operational safe houses/havens in Ghana – an unacceptable state of affairs!
The proverb fails to talk about the preparation, faith and prayer that precedes the “single step”. As we reflect back today, there are so many little miracles that have made the start of the project possible today.
The vision for the Pearl started with a conversation between Akosua and Isobel as they shared their heart to build a place of refuge for young women. As the vision gained traction a team of professionals was formed – each with a unique passion to work for the empowerment of women and appalled by the current lack of resources to support abused women in the country. The profiles of our amazing team can be found at this link. https://thepearlsafehaven.org/profiles/
As we shared our vision for young women in Ghana whose lives are so rudely interrupted by violence and abuse, we were overwhelmed first by the incredible work carried out by the Ministry of Gender and DOVVSU with very limited resources and second by the number of private sector players who wanted to support The Pearl. Starting this project would not have been possible without the seed funding from the Australian High Commission – whose grant team choose The Pearl project from a pool of projects as the worthy recipient of funds raised at the Melbourne Cup Charity Gala 2018. That was the first miracle!
Another key miracle was Akosua’s mother donating a piece of land so we could give birth to the project. That selfless incredible act triggered more miracles: Our architectural partner Signum Developers stepped in to prepare all our technical drawings and lent their expertise to support women in an incredible way! Our legal partners, JLD & MBtook on the work of preparing legal documents to ensure we run with excellence, mindful of our corporate governance obligations. Our website was built (and is managed!) by Stimuluz, a team of 20-something-year-olds focused on impacting their communities. And following a tender, our construction partner BKT Construction went over and above to reduce cost (but not quality!) to bring us the most cost-effective proposal having falling in love with the vision of The Pearl.
An African proverb says “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” As we step onto the site today to start construction, we are humbled by the team and partners who have gone this far with us.
There is still so much to do but we are hopeful on this journey and we are committed to changing the narrative on gender-based violence in Ghana.
Donations are always appreciated, but there are lots of great ways to get involved.