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I’ve had quite an interesting vantage point over the last couple of years. I’ve watched an idea morph and grow and emerge. It’s a beautiful and inspirational thing to witness. Not only has the idea transformed but every party involved has as well. I’ve seen an artist step into her role. I’ve seen survivors stand tall and acknowledge publicly their past. I’ve become passionate about nurturing these women and the idea that their vulnerability might whisper to someone entrapped. Or maybe their courage might reach out and steady the one that is on the precipice of a life changing decision. What if this idea inspired others to put their faith into action by donating or volunteering with a worthy cause? But hope of all hopes, what if all of these things occurred? Possible? Probable?

The good news is it’s both possible and probable. I’ve seen all of these things happened. Women have been inspired to leave abusive situations. Many people have come together to volunteer to raise money and support this night for Safe Haven. So what comes next is pure icing. And who really knows what seeds have been and will continue to be planted by the Choose Courage Foundation.

But the message of these 12 women is pure and true. You are worthy. You are enough. You are beautiful. To deny these things is to limit who you were meant to be and the potential you possess. We may not all be in the spotlight or even desire that, but the impact we can have is far greater than a brief illumination on stage.

Our actions have a butterfly effect. A brief flutter of our wings can put into motion a chain of events that have everlasting consequences. You may have heard the idea of changing your family tree. I want you to stop and think for just a minute what these 12 ladies have done in that respect. By taking themselves and their children out of the abusive situation they in essence may have changed their family tree. The cycle of violence may now have been broken for that family. Just think of the potential in that moment of courage. Physical lives may have been spared. Emotional turmoil may have been avoided. Financial ruin may have been averted. And take all of that and multiply it by all the lives that those branches grow into. Now multiply that by 12 women. Staggering.

We may not be able to solve the world’s problems but we can affect those around us. And by doing so, our influence travels far. Flutter your wings while you can so that others may be inspired to Emerge.

Choose Courage Foundation