Our belief is that grief encompasses more than just pain. We believe that over time grief changes shape and comes to hold space for many different experiences and emotions – some of these experiences may be painful – like a milestone or the anniversary of a loved one’s death – but some of them may be comforting – like warm memories and the enduring role that your loved one plays in your life.

For those who have not had the experience, it is impossible to understand the depth of the pain caused by the loss of a mate. Being widowed is a singular kind of displacement, entirely different from any other kind of separation. Many persons especially women are blindsided by it because couples rarely talk about the inevitable. The social impediments of being widowed can further complicate any financial morass. The moment a woman is at her most vulnerable, she must make choices that will have an enduring impact on her wellbeing.

Moving on can be fraught with obstacles. Some women simply cannot be alone and are so afraid of the stigma of being single that they are willing to settle for men who are not loving, validating, or solvent.  Also, without skills, support, or opportunity, widows often succumb to the viscous cycle of poverty. Some are forced into servitude or beggary, and those with children are forced to surrender them to an orphanage, to traffickers, to child marriage, or to the streets.

At Patrick Ayanski through Ruth’s Purse Project, We assist widows wherever the need arises. We do not want them to suffer any more than they already have. We provide support to widows to ease the burden of the reality of their situations. This is a priority to us because as an organization we provide stipends to the widows even before the staff are paid.



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