Founder of Run for Congo WomenBook Speaker
Lisa Shannon had what many would consider a good life—a successful company, a fiance, security. But one day, while watching Oprah, she was awakened to the atrocities in the Congo: women gang-raped and demoralized, millions dead from the worst war since World War II. She decided, at that moment, to become an activist and a sister. As the first grassroots activist in the U.S. working to raise awareness of the humanitarian crisis in the Congo, often called “the worst place on earth to be a woman,” she began with a lone 30-mile run. From there she founded Run for Congo Women and penned the striking book, A Thousand Sisters: My Journey into the Worst Place on Earth to Be a Woman.
A Thousand Sisters: My Journey into the Worst Place on Earth to Be a Woman
How can a single moment change your life-- and the lives of others? With grace and integrity, Lisa Shannon shares her transformation from lapsed idealist to leader of a mass movement for Congolese women. Moving from her first lone run in Portland to the war-shattered Congo, she tells us the harrowing but hopeful stories of the women she's helped, and the relationships she's formed. How do you create a virtuous cycle by cultivating women's leadership, at home and abroad? Where do you find the courage to start a non-profit with no experience? And why must we rethink our relationship with Africa, one woman at a time? Anchored by human bonds that terror cannot touch, this powerful talk explores the world's deadliest war through the intimate lens of friendship.
A Thousand Sisters
Lisa J. Shannon had a good life—a successful business, a fiance, a home, and security. Then, one day in 2005, an episode of Oprah changed all that. The show focused on women in Congo, the worst place on earth to be a woman. She was awakened to the atrocities there—millions dead, women raped and tortured daily, and children dying in shocking numbers. Shannon felt called to do something. And she did. A Thousand Sisters is her inspiring memoir. She raised money to sponsor Congolese women, beginning with one solo 30-mile run, and then founded a national organization, Run for Congo Women. The book chronicles her journey to the Congo to meet the women her run sponsored, and shares their incredible stories. What begins as grassroots activism forces Shannon to confront herself and her life, and learn lessons of survival, fear, gratitude, and immense love from the women of Africa.
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