Vision, Sisterhood, Partnerships and Service
Guest post by Dara Richardson-Heron, CEO, Susan G. Komen for the Cure Greater New York City Affiliate
The tagline, “It’s better in the Bahamas” certainly held true during our fabulous afternoon hosted by the Nassau Chapter of The Links, Inc. Over 20 Links delegates and their family members and friends were on hand for the festivities.
Our afternoon began with a heartwarming tour of “Safe House”, a model facility that is owned and operated by the Nassau Chapter of the Links, Inc. The facility was built in 2003 with a dual mission: 1) to provide a “safety net” for women in crisis who need short term respite and assistance to help them and their children get their lives back on track and; 2) to provide housing for young Bahamian women who want to pursue higher education but may not be able to do so because they cannot afford housing in Nassau.
During our tour, we had the opportunity to see first-hand what a tremendous difference Safe House is making by providing women of all ages with guidance, resources, support and education to help them achieve their goals and make a difference in the world. As so eloquently stated by Ghanaian scholar, Dr. James Emmannuel Kwegyir, one of the world’s greatest educators “…if you educate a woman, you educate a family (nation)”.
Simple words are not quite adequate to express the sense of pride, sisterhood and accomplishment we all felt while walking through the beautifully appointed and warm Safe House. After hearing the story about how Nassau Chapter Links Sisters together with the support of local community leaders and corporations joined forces in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles to bring Safe House into fruition, we were in awe.
Our hearts were further filled with joy when we had the opportunity to meet and speak with several of the young college students who are currently living in Safe House. Each young woman was poised, intelligent and truly impressive.
After our remarkable Safe House tour, we enjoyed a delicious lunch at the home of Nassau Link Dr. Mildred Hall-Watson, who took “southern hospitality” to a whole new level.
The vision, sisterhood, determination, generosity and commitment to community service that Nassau Links Chapter members utilized to build Safe House despite many challenges combined with the support and guidance provided by collaborating organizations, government officials and corporations has already significantly enhanced the lives of many Bahamian women and future generations. Because of Safe House, young women, whose dreams of higher education could have easily been thwarted, now are pursuing the requisite education to become doctors, lawyers, educators, architects and engineers.
Given this compelling testament to the power of collaboration, sisterhood, vision and commitment to community service, I have no doubt that the work Susan G. Komen for the Cure is currently doing in the Bahamas in collaboration with The Links, Inc., Government officials and other community partners to enhance breast health education, research, screening and treatments will be enormously successful and save many lives.
It’s hard to go wrong when you have a clear vision, valuable partnerships, sisterhood and commitment to service—the major tenets of our organization and the keys to our current and future success!
About the author
Nancy G. Brinker promised her dying sister, Susan G. Komen, she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. In 1982, that promise became Susan G. Komen and launched the global breast cancer movement. Today, Komen is the world’s largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists fighting to save lives, empower people, ensure quality care for all and energize science to find the cures. Thanks to events like the Komen Race for the Cure®, we have invested more than $1.9 billion to fulfill our promise, becoming the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to the fight against breast cancer in the world.