Have you ever spoken to someone who was deathly afraid of participating in something? Well, this specific fear and belief of having a written will is so deep that many individuals die leaving their families in ugly disputes. Endless questions of which person gets what and how surrounding the topics of property and inheritance. In Tanzania, the superstition of creating a will in advance is “alerting God” to die early. Many people are sincerely terrified of being apart of such a process. But what a significant impact it can be for familes. It can assist, protect and lift a massive burden off the grieving spouse and immediate family in some of the hardest times of life.
July has been a continuous journey of breaking down barriers and superstitions for us. We’re aware of the challenges and time it will continue to take to educate on creating a will and creating a safety plan for the spouse in a time of grief. Over the past couple weeks; we have met with dozens of trainees on human rights and it was encouraging to hear both men and women combat such a large cultural superstition and say that they will be creating a will shortly after our discussions. We've heard men from Dar es Salaam state, “I’m creating a will as soon as I get home. I want my wife and family to know I care. I don’t believe in the fear of death, for me it’s all about changing your mind.” And we have heard from Maasai women boldly say, "It's just a piece of paper not a person. It has nothing to do with death." Hearing this has helped us continue having the conversation every week in our trainings. The desire of wanting to save their family from even more heartbreak in the future is crucual. Culturally, the belief of such a curse can truly bound families to fear, leaving them divided and distraught in a time of grief.
With sincere compassion, our desire is to help educate not only wives but their husbands women's rights. To help them understand the benefits behind creating a will for their families. Our hope is to advocate against generational fear in the result of helping families unite in a time of grief instead of divide.