Thursday, July 30, 2009
Diane Raaum, President of the Women's Fund, had the opportunity to speak out. "...Over 80% of those seeking transportation help today are women. We know this administration is about solutions. The Women's Fund is also about solutions and doing work at a community level. There are  women's funds throughout the world that are effecting social change in their communities. [In Wisconsin] women only earn $.71 for every dollar that a man earns. Furthermore, the current economic downturn has disproportionately impacted women and their families. We had almost $70,000 in grant requests this year from our community but were only able to fund $19,000. Many of these requests were going to meet basic needs. So we would like to know how you are proposing to include women as a solution to these problems and how you are going to help women and families in need in the La Crosse area," Raaum said.
The Secretaries responded that President Obama "gets it" and has passed that message on to his cabinet. They noted that President Obama passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and that supporting women and children is a priority for this administration. The Secretaries also noted the administration's goal to eliminate child hunger by 2015.
Congratulations to The Women's Fund of the La Crosse Foundation for making their voices heard and seizing this unique opportunity to raise the visibility of women's funds and the plight of women and girls during the economic downturn!
Post by Amy Moy, Interim Director, Communications and Marketing, Women's Funding Network
Thursday, July 23, 2009
What do you think?
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
In recent years, with the price of food has sky-rocketing, women around the world are disproportionately affected. But women should not be looked at a mere victims in this food crisis, but rather a means providing food security for families and communities. President Obama and legislators seem to be getting this point. Ritu Sharma, president and co-founder of Women Thrive Worldwide, wrote a great article on this topic. She says:
President Barack Obama has called upon Congress to double U.S. assistance for global agricultural development to more than $1 billion in 2010. The bipartisan Roadmap to End Global Hunger and Promote Food Security Act (H.R. 2817) co-sponsored by Jim McGovern, D-Mass., and Jo Ann Emerson, R-Ste. Genevieve, introduced last month, outlines a comprehensive strategy for U.S. leadership on this issue. It also recognizes that assistance should reach women farmers, not just farmers or small farmers.Read the full article here.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
|The Colbert Report||Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c|
While Stephen Colbert’s killer-comic timing usually shocks and stupefies his guests, he met his match last night with the Liberian peace activist Leymah Gbowee. Ms. Gbowee organized the courageous women of Liberia to bring an end to their devastating civil war, citing that they were fed up and could not take the terror and violence any longer and decided to do something about it.
Her poise and ability to keep Colbert engaged in the issues demonstrates that when you’ve taken a stand to the likes of human rights offenders like former Liberian Dictator Charles Taylor (currently on trial in The Hague for crimes against Sierra Leone), the Colbert Report ain’t so scary.
Leymah Gbowee and the women of Liberia are the subjects of the award-winning documentary Pray the Devil Back to Hell. Check out the interview (above) to get a taste.
Find out more about how African women are improving their communities.
(Post by Kristina)
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
These days, it is more important than ever that we diversify our leadership and include women in top decision making positions. With evidence that points to the success of organizations and institutions that include diverse perspectives in their leadership, we should be looking to these models for moving our country and the world forward.
Have you been following the confirmation hearings? What are your thoughts?
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Where to begin...
The show has already been labeled racist and neocolonial, and I think it can also be called sexist and comes off as an unrealistic and unsustainable model of "philanthropy" -- which is portrayed on the show as random acts of charity rather than social change philanthropy. I am hoping that the story and characters develop out of this macho and imperialistic form of giving, but from the first couple of episodes I am not convinced.
Here are some of my reactions to the first couple of episodes:
- The show reinforces a very patriarchal model of philanthropy (white man giving to poor people). The philanthropy is not democratized and it fails to lift up voices and solutions besides those of the western world.
- It upholds what I consider an “old model” of charity -- where solutions come top down and are not necessarily sustainable (all of the “philanthropy” that the show actually depicts is very much random acts of charity rather than sustainable systemic philanthropy, like getting a little girl in Burma/Myanmar a kidney transplant, or delivering vaccines to a village in Nigeria).
- It also portrays a linear model of development where the global north is “saving” or “helping” the global south, not lifting up and providing resources for solutions from on the ground. The show also reinforces very negative stereotypes of the global south, portraying countries like Nigeria and Burma/Myanmar as dangerous, primitive, corrupt and unable to help their own people, which perpetuating a negative view of these places.
- And the show seemed sexist to me. The women who were in the show were all secondary characters and didn’t offer much in the way of solutions to the problems the main character faced. The story line also continually circled back to the achievements/concerns/emotions of the main male lead.
Have you seen the show yet? What is your take?
Even with the announcement of the new White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, the press continues to fail reporting on successful and innovative solutions to domestic violence. The Women's Fund of Central Indiana has been working to break the cycle of domestic violence by educating youth.
"I am really proud of a $150,000 grant Women's Fund gave to the Ruth Lilly Health Education Center (RLHEC)... RLHEC created a curriculum to help the students learn to recognize appropriate behaviors and what to do if they are currently in or someday are part of an unhealthy relationship."
Read more about this awesome program at the Women's Fund of Central Indiana's blog.
Keep up the great work!