SALE accountant Kaitlyn Abrahall is one of 19 women chosen to join The Hunger Project Australia’s leadership trip to India in February — fulfilling a mission to challenge herself and helps others at the same time.
Kaitlyn is Victoria’s only regional participant, and will join others from around Australia on the week-long trip to see first hand the challenges that people there, particularly women, face every day.
After hearing about the mission through her involvement with networking organisation Business Chicks, Kaitlyn jumped at the chance to be involved in something that could shape the future of women in third world countries.
“Apart from my own personal growth, I felt it was a great opportunity to raise awareness of the status of women in the third world, and try to be involved in things that aim to improve their lives and of the communities they live in,” she said.
She said women in Australia had “opportunities” that their female counterparts elsewhere did not, and Kaitlyn hopes to play a role in developing female leaders in India who would have a voice in decision making and leadership.
“We want women to develop their own processes that give them basic services such as water, sanitation, education, health care and an efficient food system,” she said.
“The people living in these communities deserve to have basic hygiene, fresh water, and to know that they will not starve.”
While in the northern state of Uttarakhand, near the border with Nepal, Kaitlyn and the participants will meet locals, hear their stories and learn lessons “from the village floor”.
All this is based around the belief that providing the resources and knowledge to empower local people to become leaders can help end hunger, and that people living in these conditions are the key resources in achieving this goal.
Kaitlyn will self-fund her own travel and living expenses while in India, but must raise $10,000 to contribute to the Hunger Project’s work.
One hundred per cent of money donated will go towards the project’s continuous work and commitment to “the sustainable end of world hunger”.
The Hunger Project has ongoing programs in Africa, Asia and Latin America, where it implements programs aimed at mobilizing rural communities to achieve sustainable progress in health, education, nutrition and family income.
The former Catholic College student is running some fundraising projects to help her reach the necessary $10,000 contribution, including a barefoot bowls event on October 21 at Sale Bowls Club, and a trivia night in November (details to be announced).
To help Kaitlyn get to India and participate in the project, go to join.thp.org.au/fundraisers/kaitlynabrahall.