Keeping Hope Alive
One Woman: 90,000 Lives Changed
Publication Date: April 2, 2013
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The moving memoir of one brave woman who, along with her daughters, has kept 90,000 of her fellow citizens safe, healthy, and educated for over 20 years in Somalia.
Dr. Hawa Abdi, "the Mother Teresa of Somalia" and Nobel Peace Prize nominee, is the founder of a massive camp for internally displaced people located a few miles from war-torn Mogadishu, Somalia. Since 1991, when the Somali government collapsed, famine struck, and aid groups fled, she has dedicated herself to providing help for people whose lives have been shattered by violence and poverty. She turned her 1300 acres of farmland into a camp that has numbered up to 90,000 displaced people, ignoring the clan lines that have often served to divide the country. She inspired her daughters, Deqo and Amina, to become doctors. Together, they have saved tens of thousands of lives in her hospital, while providing an education to hundreds of displaced children.
In 2010, Dr. Abdi was kidnapped by radical insurgents, who also destroyed much of her hospital, simply because she was a woman. She, along with media pressure, convinced the rebels to let her go, and she demanded and received a written apology.
Dr. Abdi's story of incomprehensible bravery and perseverance will inspire readers everywhere.
Dr. Hawa Abdi, a Somalian human rights activist, lawyer, and doctor, specializing in gynecology, founded the Doctor Hawa Abdi Foundation, which runs a hospital and school in one of the largest internally displaced persons camps in the country, offering sanctuary to nearly 90,000 people. Glamour named her "Woman of the Year" in 2010 and dubbed her and her daughters "the Saints of Somalia, equal parts Mother Teresa and Rambo." She was featured as one of the top "Women Who Shake the World" in Newsweek in 2011, was interviewed by Tina Brown at the 2011 Women in the World Summit, and this year has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
More than 20 years ago, Dr. Hawa Abdi set out to change her broken society when she turned her 1,300-acre farmland outside Mogadishu into a camp for 90,000 internally displaced Somalis. Now she calls it Hawa Village â�� and it includes a hospital, school and farm. More at NPR.org
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"Keeping Hope Alive is the inspiring story of how one woman educated, fed and healed thousands of the world's vulnerable in one of the most dangerous places on earth." --Angelina Jolie, Actress and Activist
"Dr. Hawa Abdi embodies the resilience, compassion, and grace of the human spirit. In this poignanttestament of her life's work, she reminds us that we are deeply interconnected and compels us to act. If we seek to create lasting peace, to preserve freedom and protect dignity, we need to stand with leaders like Dr. Abdi." --Alyse Nelson, President & CEO, Vital Voices Global Partnership
"One of the great heroes of our time, Dr. Hawa Abdi, has written a beautiful, heart-gladdening book about what she created against a tide of violence and destruction. Everyone should read this book to find the hope within themselves." --Tina Brown. Editor, Newsweek and The Daily Beast
"Dr. Hawa Abdi is the fiercest, most compassionate frontline humanitarian and doctor on the planet. She has faced the risk of near-certain death and is called Mama Hawa by the hundreds of thousands of Somali people whose lives she has saved. Her extraordinary life defies imagination and instills courage in each of us." --Eliza Griswold, Journalist and author of The Tenth Parallel
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For its 10th anniversary, the festival celebrates those who have dared to stand ‘on the edge,’ risking their careers, and sometimes their lives, to speak out for their art and beliefs. Join us for a wide range of events, including debates, one-on-one conversations, participatory workshops and performances in venues throughout the city. Use the code PEN14 (use PEN2014 for events at The Public Theater) and receive a 20 percent discount on most events. www.worldvoicesfestival.org