This week we are launching Tearfund’s Big Bake – a powerful way of engaging with the issues around global poverty and to raise money that will be used to fund life-transforming projects.
Sahira* was born in the Central Asian States where life is tough. HIV, drug abuse, unemployment, family breakdown, crime and violence are all on the rise. Poverty is widespread and Sahira’s parents were unable to care for her, leaving her vulnerable and alone.
An orphanage provided a safe place for Sahira but Lev and Zarina, who run the orphanage, knew that she, and the other girls they were looking after, needed more than just a home.
When the time came for girls to leave the orphanage they were unable to find work and 90 per cent of them were falling victim to trafficking and other crime. The girls needed a safer future and that meant skills and the possibility of work.
With training and support from one of Tearfund’s partners, Lev and Zarina started a baking course for the girls. Lev was then given a cash grant that he used to buy ovens and other baking equipment.
This is making a huge difference, giving Sahira and others the skills and confidence to build safe lives – free from the exploitation that was inevitable without this opportunity.
Meanwhile in Twickenham
It was a damp day in October and the rugby was on. Hoods up and shoulders hunkered, the rugby fans streamed into the ground at Twickenham. But as they passed one particular garden, their day was brightened by the sight of bunting, balloons and an abundance of cake.
Tearfund supporter Debs is one of a whisk-beating, sprinkle-shaking army using their baking skills to end poverty across the world through Tearfund’s Big Bake. She knows the power of a good cake. And it’s not just good for rugby fans – it’s good for a young girl like Sahira as well.
Realising she’d get a good flow of people going past her home on match day Debs set up a stall in her front garden. She wasn’t afraid to be as visible and vocal as possible. With great gusto she proclaimed to the passing throngs: ‘Get your cupcakes here! Three for the price of two! Roll up roll up!’
The cake sale went well. Debs and her family raised a fantastic £200! That could train and equip another person like Lev to provide a safe future for many more young people like Sahira.