A Service to Survivors

By Jacqueline Glenn

Sometimes a shiny pink bag makes all the difference.

“Wow! What pretty bags these ladies will get to carry around,” a worker for True North of Columbia exclaimed when I dropped off these care packages. Containing personal care items such as shampoo, dish soap, washcloths, and more, these bags will reach domestic abuse and sexual violence survivors in the Columbia, MO area.

When we purchased the supplies for this project, my sisters Julie and Jessica Glenn and I knew that we wanted to meet the needs of these women, but we also wanted to touch their hearts—hence the rose gold bags. We wanted the women receiving them to feel good about carrying them. Maybe they will look at these bags and smile, knowing that someone cares about them.

We also included in the bags an inspirational message from Fight the War Within: wallet-sized cards that say, “You are not alone in this.” Survivors of domestic abuse are at high risk for suicide attempts, according to the American Psychological Association. Hopefully the women who receive these bags will look at these messages daily, and they will be a constant reminder that they matter. They are never alone, and they are a valuable part of this world. 

Unfortunately the COVID-19 pandemic prevented us from working with these warriors face to face, and it also prohibited Jessica and Julie from coming to my dorm room, but that didn’t stop us. We rented a hotel room and created an assembly line of the items, and we were still able to give back. 

We improvised, and so can you! Even if it’s just holding the door for someone with an armload of groceries or smiling at a stranger, we can all share the love during this pandemic. It all makes a difference. 


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