Healing Fistulas: Restoring Women and Girls to Their Dignity and Health

September 23, 2013
Hosted by Audrey E. Kitagawa

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Guest Information

Episode Description

For the past 27 years urologist, Dr. Steve Arrowsmith, has worked in 12 African countries as a surgeon repairing fistulas, (i.e. holes which develop in the walls between the vagina, rectum, or bladder), in women and girls. Fistulas are most often caused by obstructed labor, or trauma due to sexual violence or premature sexual contact with young girls who are not physically mature enough to engage in sexual relations. As a result of the fistulas, the women and girls suffer extreme humiliation because of their urinary and fecal incontinence which result in their being abandoned, isolated or ostracized because of the foul odor, leg and body sores and unsanitary conditions which develop. Dr. Arrowsmith has made thousands of fistula repairs, restoring women and girls to their dignity and health. He has trained other doctors in fistula repair, researched and written extensively about fistulas, appeared as an expert with international organizations, and helped to open fistula clinics in Africa.

Our Sacred Journey

Our Sacred Journey

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Our Sacred Journey will inspire others to share their love, compassion and kindness as a powerful way of actualizing the reality of the Divine in our daily lives. Our fascinating guests are global citizens who live and manifest their values, principles and ideals. You’ll hear the broad spectrum of life experiences that moved these passionate, courageous people through the hallways of such global institutions as the United Nations, to the villages in developing countries. We will discuss what it means to live as global citizens from the foundation of our inner spirituality, values and beliefs. Our potential to create a harmonious, cooperative present and future arising out of our own creativity and commitment to make valuable contributions to humanity will weave a beautiful tapestry of our sacred journey together.

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Audrey E. Kitagawa

Audrey E. Kitagawa

Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, Audrey E. Kitagawa, is a cum laude graduate of the University of Southern California, and a graduate of Boston College Law School. She practiced law in Honolulu for twenty years. At the time of her retirement in 1996, Ms. Kitagawa had a Martindale-Hubbel AV rating, (i.e. highest rating for professional and ethical excellence in the legal profession). She is President of the Light of Awareness International Spiritual Family, a nondenominational, ecumenical, spiritual community with broad global outreach. She is the former Advisor to the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Children and Armed Conflict at the United Nations, and the former Vice President/Trustee of Council For A Parliament of The World’s Religions, one of the world’s largest conveners of communities of faith. She is currently a Founding Trustee of the New York City Peace Museum.

She has been enstooled into the royal family as the Nekoso Hemaa (i.e.Queen Mother of Development), of Ajiyamanti in Ghana, West Africa, and has a school named after her in her African name, the Nana Ode Anyankobea Junior Secondary School. She has published articles in World Affairs, The Journal of International Issues. She has authored chapters for three books, and has been listed in Who's Who of American Law, Who's Who of American Women, Who's Who in America, Who's Who in the World, and Prominent People of Hawaii.

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