Newsletter January 2017

The Women's Center Is Up!

At last!  Despite many challenges, the construction is almost finished! The roofhas been completed, the final walls are being bricked in (after removing interior scaffolding needed for the roof)! The septic tank & toilets are next, & replacing the concrete fence is next. Soon windows & doors will be fitted.

The idealized model of the Centre faces the street, with a narrow courtyard in front & to the side of the ground floor; small 2nd floor balconies are above. Not shown aresurrounding houses: a lot of quite cozy neighbors!

Moving in may begin next month. Still needed are many items of equipment: tables, chairs, & chalkboards for teaching; beds, cupboards, kitchen & tableware for residents (battered women, sewing students & orphans); furnishings for office & counseling.

Capital Campaign Success! Thank You All!

Tuasakidila wa bungi! Merci beaucoup! What wonderful people you are! THANK YOU SO MUCH from all of us:

  • from Maman Monique & all her colleagues, students in the sewing school & day schools, victims of rape & violence & floods & hunger & homelessness & AIDS & more;
  • from our little non-profit in NJ


We cannot begin to name everyone, but we want to identify a few big events: three concerts “Chansons pour le Congo!” by Karrin Allyson, 2013, 2014, 2015, put us on the map! Thank you so much, Karrin!!!  Two concerts “Pour Femmes” organized by Anna de Groot in 2016 filled our final campaign year with song. Thank you so much, Anna & Friends! A number of generous donors have swelled our coffers with their matching grant challenges & YOU have matched their gifts! Thank you so much, Kind Friends Everyone!

Naming Success: Land was bought in 2014, the building is complete in January 2017! Dreams can come true! Thanks to you, Woman Cradle of Abundance now has a home.

Naming Hope: A home needs furnishing (see across the page), & we hope that you may be willing to continue your generosity on this smaller scale, especially as Congo faces such difficult days. Give a chair or table or bed or pillows or plates!

Trials & THanksgiving in Congo

Congo has been passing through a severe political storm. It is not over yet, but the grave fears of the past several months have been eased & all are thankful.

As noted in our Oct. newsletter, the president of Congo refused to organize elections or step down at the end of his 2nd term. Peaceful protests were met with military violence in Sept., local conflicts (as in Kasai, where Maman Monique & other FEBA leaders were born) have taken more lives, the continuing war in eastern Congo has been aggravated. In Kinshasa most people stayed home much of Dec. but soldiers & police have entered & arrested hundreds, mostly young men. Food is very scarce; tripled prices spell hunger, empty markets, few sales. Yet they pray daily.

The Roman Catholic bishops have labored for weeks to bring the president’s party & opposition groups together. Dec. 31 – the last minute! - the accord was signed: Kabila remains in place but may not seek reelection or changes to the constitution, a transitional body headed by Tshisekedi, the opposition leader, will oversee until elections in late 2017.  Challenges remain, but the people are hopeful & thankful & returning to normal life!

How We Have Grown!

Contribute or Get Involved

Contribute: Donate securely via Stripe at

Please designate “Capital Campaign” in the purpose line to contribute to equipping the Women’s Center, or “Sustaining Gift” to support ongoing work.

Checks payable to Woman, Cradle of Abundance can be mailed to the following address:

Woman, Cradle of Abundance
attn:  Cheryl Ciaranca, Treasurer
25 Alexander St.
Princeton, NJ 08525

Volunteer: Contact Cheryl Ciaranca, Community Outreach Coordinator, at  or (215) 292-3290 to discuss ways to partner with Woman, Cradle of Abundance.