There is a very special visitor to the centre: She has only two teeth left in her upper mouth. But she has a BIG smile. She is one of the best advertisers we have, and often brings a new neighbour when she comes. She is around 63 and she is not finished! Whenever the exercise was hard, she didn’t give up, she tried again! All her faithful efforts at the centre with us have paid off: She feels a lot better in her back and yes, she says she is healed! “Ti erdh’ me na sh’nosh – You came to heal us” but the truth is that no-one took the exercises more seriously than her. She has taken ownership of her own health situation to improve it.
When our friend first came, she was just leaning forward, seeming so weak and poor. You would have had no idea that she would have been so strong in the end. She says to me, “You have earned so many sevaps (good points) for this work! I wish your children good health and all the best for your family!”. She has improved her health and she wants to give back. She gave all our workers presents even my husband a pair of socks. She has gotten involved in everything at Hope and Health, even a craft afternoon making local-version Norwegian toy trolls.
The ladies know we have opened this “just for them”. And the feeling is of THAT, since all our services are free for them. They feel so blessed and probably don’t know how blessed we feel too.
Another friend comments, "When I come here all my worries go away. I came even when I was on my monthly bleeding and could not exercise, just to see you. It made me feel good. I believe God has really sent you here. I have gotten so much better in my back and foot problems. I could hardly move my hand before, now I can move and I feel so great. My friend is also much better. “I have just gotten so much better coming here”.
Hope and Health focuses on relieving degenerative back problems such as osteoporosis and spondylosis by strengthening supportive muscle platforms. According to the director of the pathology laboratory next door, more than 50% of the women in the municipality are in pain – physically – but ALSO mentally and socially. They need people who can listen to their stories, he says. They receive little attention, day-in and day-out. Since opening Hope and Health, a centre for women only, in the April of 2017, we have had hundreds of women visiting, and many of these return regularly for massage and back exercises. Of these, many report that they have improved the situation in their backs.