What Is the Best Help for Widows?
Though widows face multiple barriers to living safely and above poverty, one of the biggest challenges is their access to a stable income. Help for widows can come in many forms but employment and income generation are among the most beneficial.
According to UN Women, one of the best ways to help widows is to, “Empower widows to support themselves and their families and live with dignity by ensuring access to education and training opportunities, decent work and equal pay, and by reversing social stigmas that exclude, discriminate, or lead to harmful and violent practices against widows.”
The UN reports that poverty strikes widows for various reasons, including the following:
- Many widows have limited or no rights to inherit property or land, as determined by customary and religious laws.
- Widows often rely on the charity and support of their late husbands’ relatives to make a living.
- In certain South Asian countries, widows may be disowned by their own families, leaving them without a home. This forces some widows to work as domestic helpers, resort to begging, or even engage in prostitution to survive.
- Widows often struggle to access credit or other financial resources, making it difficult for them to provide for their children’s needs or pursue education.
- In some cases, widows can become responsible for the debts left behind by their deceased spouses.
GFA missionaries understand the issues widows face and seek to provide practical solutions to individual widows in their communities. Often, a GFA missionary will see that a widow has no way of making an income to support herself and her children. Or she may be forced into unskilled work that often does not pay enough for basic necessities.
GFA missionaries help widows in various ways. For example, through GFA World’s Gift Catalog program, Widow’s Fund or Women’s Fellowships, GFA missionaries can provide widows with goods, income generating animals, vocational training and resources that can help her earn a sustainable income.
These are just a few ways to give widows the help they need so that they can avoid deep poverty, hardship for their families and removing their children from school. Your gift to help widows is the gift of hope and opportunity for a widow with very few opportunities. She will likely face many hardships in the wake of her grief, but you can make a difference in her life by providing help through GFA World. GFA missionaries see widows through the love of Jesus Christ and offer them hope for now and for eternity. If a widow can own her business or be trained in a skill that can garner good wages, then she can own her life with dignity, knowing she has support from people who will love and support her.Learn more about charities that help widows
 “Explainer: What you should know about widowhood.” UN Women. https://www.unwomen.org/en/news/stories/2021/6/explainer-what-you-should-know-about-widowhood. June 21, 2021.
 “International Widows’ Day 23 June.” United Nations. https://www.un.org/en/observances/widows-day. Accessed October 19, 2022.