Columbus, OH - Dr. Hawa Abdi, the renowned Somali gynecologist, humanitarian activist and Nobel Prize nominee was in Columbus, Ohio on Thursday, April 11th and Friday, April 13th, 2013 as part of her American tour to promote her new book “Keeping Hope Alive: One Woman; 90,000 Lives.” In her book signing tour, Dr. Hawa was accompanied by her daughter and fellow medical doctor, Dr. Deqo Aden Mohamed and Sarah Robbins, a New York-based journalist, who co-authored the book with Dr. Hawa Abdi.
Monday, April 15, 2013
Somalis in Ohio came out in large numbers to buy the book and make sure that Dr. Hawa appends her signature on their books. On Thursday, a large crowde of wellwishers and supporters flocked to the Barnes and Nobles bookstore at the Easton Mall in Columbus where Dr. Hawa, her daughter Dr. Deqa and co-author Sarah made a good presentation on Dr. Hawa’s professional journey that saw her grow from a little girl who lost her mother at the tender age of 12 to an internationally acknowledged human rights defender who provides hope, home and healing the more than 90,000 vulnerable Somalis in her farm which became known as the Dr. Hawa Abdi Villege. At the end of that event, an employee of the bookstore declared that the store’s inventory of the book was down to only 6 books.
On Friday, Dr. Hawa spoke at the Ohio State University where she was hosted by the Somali Student Association of OSU, the Center for African Studies and the Department of African American and African Studies at the Ohio State University. Students, staff, members of faculty as well as people from the larger community came to hear Dr. Hawa’s inspirational story and get their copy of the book. In her presentation to Somali students at the Ohio State University, Dr. Hawa said “Somalia needs you. No matter how far you go up the academic and professional ladders elsewhere, the sad situation of your heritage country will haunt you.” Dr. Hawa and her team spent over two hours signing books and taking photographs with enthusiastic supporters.
Finally, Dr. Hawa was honored at a special dinner with intellectuals and community leaders. The dinner and books signing function was organized by Sahid Ali, a prominent leader and educator in the Somali community, Jibril Mohamed a lecturer at the Ohio State University and the leader of the Somali Community Access Netwrok and Khadra Mohamed, the president of the Center for Somali Women’s Advancement. Speaking to the community leaders, Dr. Hawa emphasized the importance of living for something bigger than one’s own basic necessities and requested participants to keep Somalia in mind at all times and work to improve the lives of Somalis. “History will judge you negatively if you do not use your privileges to save your home country Somalia,” said Dr. Hawa speaking at the dinner.
Speaking after the dinner, Dr. Deqo Aden Mohamed stated that she and her mother were very pleased with the great turnout for the book signing events and the marvelous show of support by the community for Dr. Hawa Abdi. Dr. Hawa and Dr. Deqo showed profound appreciation
Dr. Hawa’s Columbus book tour was a huge success with bookstores reporting that their inventories were all sold out. Dr. Hawa will continue her book tour in other cities in the United States and Canada. To find out more about Mama Hawa’s Spring Book Tour, please visit the website of Dr. Hawa Abdi Foundation at www.dhaf.org.