Boy oh boy, it has been a big 24 hours. I landed here in Colombo last night and it has been non-stop ever since. Next Thursday, we launch our new Emerge Center. After years of dreaming, I cannot tell you how exciting it is to see this coming to fruition. And, after months of the Emerge team planning every detail of our new program, curriculum, and house set-up, seeing the space tonight was absolutely magical. I know I’m biased, but it is the most beautiful home I could have imagined for our girls, and is going to be such a special place for them to live and learn while transitioning from shelters into their independent adult lives. You can check out the short video tour I made of the center here. Keep in mind we are still setting up the house/finalizing renovations (and I’m filming and narrating using my iphone off of quite little sleep). We’ll send out a more polished video after the launch so you can see how the Center turns out. But, in the meantime, I could not wait to share this with you!
So, what’s the big deal with this Center?
Our Center is the first living and learning community of its kind in Sri Lanka for young women leaving the shelter system. As you can imagine, finding a place to stay right after leaving a locked shelter, interviewing for your first job, or putting savings generated to good use takes some time. And, until now, we have had no space where young women could stay as they made this critical transition. Our center fixes this problem, enabling 16 young women to live with us while learning to navigate the outside world — from taking the bus, to buying their first groceries, to getting their first jobs and internships. In our first batch of girls, we will also be piloting a three-month curriculum we’ve developed to deepen their skills in an experiential and healing environment that allows girls to embrace risks, growth, and creativity as they pave the paths to reach their goals.
Thanks to our phenomenal team, Emerge is about to go to the next level… And, we are all so excited!
Thank you for being on this journey with me,