Part One of a Series on New International Team Members
Anne Cody joined She Is Safe in December of 2013, and has brought energy, vision, and expertise to her role as Country Director of South Sudan. She has already worked to establish new Transformation Groups among some of the poorest women in South Sudan. Transformation Groups is the name of the She Is Safe program that equips local women of the church to lead women in their communities to gather each week to learn vocational skills, create a savings and lending pool, and help each other succeed in small businesses as they learn about Christ. Under her leadership, a group of widows in Juba have been able to form a Transformation Group and save enough to start businesses, and not only to feed their families, but to help feed orphans living on the street.
She first felt a passion for the mission of She Is Safe develop in 2009. President Michele Rickett visited her church and met with Anne and few others. In this intimate setting, she heard of the desperate circumstances which women and girls around the world fall asleep and wake up to everyday. She also heard how She Is Safe brings hope and empowers these women through transformation groups. At this point, Anne knew she wanted to get involved with She Is Safe; however, she had just begun a Master’s Degree Program in Biblical Exposition from Columbia International Seminary. Nonetheless, she mentioned her excitement to Executive Vice-President Daniel Rickett. Once she finished her degree, Daniel contacted her, and after prayer and discussion, Anne accepted the invitation to serve as the new Country Director for South Sudan.
South Sudan is the newest country in the world, borne out of horrific violence. The women and girls we seek to empower have never known anything other than war and poverty – two giants that leave girls vulnerable to destitution, rape and slavery. Though Anne sees the violence, her vision is a future peace driven by empowered women seeking to bring light into the darkness. As South Sudan continues to form as a nation, Anne believes that the women in Transformation Groups can create peace and growth in their families, neighborhoods, and eventually the nation.
Though this long-term vision is always on Anne’s heart and mind, she also has a short term plan for how to reach that final goal. In 2014, Anne desires that 1,000 women and men would sign up and pray for those in the Transformation Groups. She envisions that 100 women and men would give $100 over the course of a year to equip these women struggling in this dark place. Finally, she is seeking 10 women and men who would join her to form an Advocacy Group for South Sudan near her in Michigan.
Anne realizes the vision is large and the journey will be long. She calls it a “God-sized vision.” However, she recognizes the power of God to multiply our small, weak efforts. I look forward to seeing how her work in South Sudan will lead to the empowerment of more women and girls and the strengthening of communities.
If you would like to help make this vision a reality, visit SheIsSafe.org/engage or email Anne Cody at firstname.lastname@example.org