Legacy for Hope

Provides support for oppressed widows and orphans.

Our Current Focus: Homeless Widows in India

Anyone who has experienced the death of a loved one understands the emotional devastation of such a loss. Imagine, however, losing not only your loved one, but also losing your home, access to basic needs such as food and medical care, and your status in family and society for the rest of your life.  Due to social norms and religious beliefs, Indian widows are blamed for the death of their husbands and are labeled as cursed.  Families often ostracize the widow, and many widows and sometimes their children become homeless.  In many areas of India, especially rural areas, it is taboo to offer shelter to a widow, thus harboring a “curse” and potentially bringing bad luck to the village.  Widows are allowed only one meal per day and are expected to avoid contact with others, not even allowing their shadows to cross another’s path.

Indian Widows, Underprivileged Children & Absolute Social Ostracization

Indian Widows, Underprivileged Children & Absolute Social Ostracization

Since the end of British rule in India in 1947, India itself has become a hub of international trade, stable democracy, and almost uninterrupted economic success. Perpetually holding India back, however, is the country’s cultural adherence to a caste system and social order which consistently fails the most underprivileged in Indian society.

Due to outdated social norms and superstitions, Indian widows are regarded with absolute contempt my mainstream Indian society. Considered cursed, it is a strict Indian taboo to even so much as offer shelter, employment, or more than one meal per day to a widow in India. As a result of this social stigma, the number of underprivileged children in India is at near crisis point. Even worse, demand for HIV treatment among widows themselves is soaring due to a forced need for many Indian widows to enter into prostitution.

How Aid Organizations Make a Difference

Widows are unwelcome in any home or social setting and face a myriad of difficulties.  Many widows and sometimes even their children suffer from a loss of basic necessities such as shelter, food, employment or medical care.  They are forced into the streets and are vulnerable to physical and sexual abuse, exposure to adverse weather conditions, and many other difficulties.  Compassionate family members or friends who provide shelter to widows risk the wrath and retaliation from neighbors and possibly arrest and imprisonment or worse for harboring a “curse”.   Since the local people are prohibited from assisting widows, agencies outside the Indian society can often alleviate the pressure and help overcome the barriers.

Thankfully, there is a ray of hope for widows and underprivileged children in India because aid organizations such as Legacy for Hope are committed to providing food, shelter and other basic necessities to those in need.  Widows in many areas of India now have a home, a place where they belong and can feel safe.

The Legacy for Hope 2018 Widows’ Home Building Project

Legacy for Hope plans to build a home in eastern India for some of the country’s most underprivileged and at-risk widows.  Providing secure housing will help restore security and dignity and alleviate many challenges for the widows.

 

The Legacy for Hope 2018 Widows’ Home Building Project
Re-establishing Indian Widows’ Rights of Self-Determination

Re-establishing Indian Widows’ Rights of Self-Determination

As well as just removing widowed women and underprivileged children in India from the street finally, we know that simply by giving such individuals access to shelter, we can help start to inspire real and much wider reaching social change on the Indian subcontinent.

When finally off the street, widows and children are able to gain access to employment, education and other services which most every day Indians take for granted. Much more importantly, such women are once again able to vote, engage in mutually beneficial community activities, and work to slowly remove the stigma attached to being widowed in India in the first place.

Project Status

We have purchased land in a strategic location and are in the process of obtaining approval for architectural plans for the building.  Legacy for Hope now needs to raise funds to cover building materials and construction costs.

Help us Start Affecting Real Change Today
How you can help?

Every dollar that you contribute will go directly towards the cost building the proposed widows’ home.  Our administrative costs are covered by other private donations.

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