The Tree of Voices: Thanking you for 2009 and telling stories into 2010 and beyond
Beloved, world shaking correspondents -
As we enter a new decade I am looking back over my shoulder and turning ahead to squint into the future. I realize now that 2009 was one of the most unexpectedly richest of my life because your voices rose and touched me beyond imagination. It was as if all those years we were bending over, planting seeds - and suddenly this tree of voices sprung up and reached into the sky!!! I always had the vision of this tree, but I was squinting at it, and when you arrived, your stories were more profound and real than i could have dreamed, and your spirits were fierce teachers.
This year I was given a great gift, the best gift of my life. It was a magnolia tree decorated with colorful packets of voices from my loved ones near and far. In so many of the square and shiny bits of paper were notes and scrolls from you. I opened a voice a day for many days (while greedily reading Pulsewire too where i can read dozens of voices a day!) - and I cried on many of those days. It was almost too much to bear, your love and accomplishments, your growing plans for yourselves, your pride in your power. Now you too, are each planting your own seeds for your own tree of voices that you will receive one day. As you encourage the other women in your lives to speak out and step into their full power - to reach the sky, to build a network of support, to say no to the destruction and violence and yes to life.
There are no words to describe the feeling of watching such a tree grow and the best wish i could every give anyone -- is to receive such a gift one day. I thank you all for this gift, your encouragement gives me the strength to keep going.
Turning ahead to the future, the world news and the every day events will continue to reach into our lives. There will be infinite stories to tell, to show the world we are powerful, we are connected, and we are building a way forward for a sustainable future. Keep telling these stories, they are lifelines.
2010 will be a big year for all of us. World Pulse will be focusing to bring more PulseWire stories to news bureaus and world audiences. We will be holding events in the US to inspire and encourage our US sisters to reach out online, connect and support their sisters everywhere. And we will work hard to grow our own reach until one day World Pulse is the leading source of information and solutions for solving world problems, powered by a network of millions of women across the globe. We will be a place where every woman can have a voice, and no woman will feel alone. It will be a world where simply by raising her voice every woman can change her life and the lives of those around her.
And of course we will see a new VOF 2010 later in the year. A new class of vibrant women who will look up to your as their big sisters, led by the passionately committed Rachael Maddock-Hughes. Rachael will be building on the visionary curriculum developed by "mother hen" Jennifer Ruwart, Scott and our program partners.
When you are ready, please join us over in the new Voices of Our Future Correspondents Network (http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire/groups/16798), which will grow soon to 60 then to 100 then 5,000 then 10,000 and beyond in the coming decade - until soon we will have a network of sisters and women leaders speaking out, supporting each other, and using new media to create a new world from every corner of the earth.
Blowing a kiss through the wires, to the glowing screens where you sit in 21 countries!
Thank you for this tree of life.
PS - If you haven't already read this fantastic article by Gail Struab about VOF you should! "Both Halves of the Sky: How Women of the Global North and Global South Make Each other Whole."