In accordance with WIL of Greater Philadelphia’s mission of “empowering women as leaders globally,” WIL offers competitive empowerment grants to provide financial support for non-profits and NGOs working in developing countries. The empowerment grants target areas of WIL’s mission other than microfinance and village banks: education, health, training, social and political empowerment programs for women. The Empowerment Grants Committee awards grants of between $500 and $1000 to provide seed money and/or help build capacity in programs.
Call for Applications for 2017 Empowerment Grants
The grants are intended to provide financial support for non-profits and NGOs working in developing countries, and target areas of WIL’s mission other than microfinance and village banks: education, health, training, social and political empowerment programs for women. Grants of up to $1000 are awarded to provide seed money and/or help build capacity in programs.
Applications should be submitted by January 31, 2017, by email attachment to Adele Lindenmeyr, Chair of the Empowerment Grants Committee, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Make a Donation to WIL and our Empowerment Grants
Contribute as much or as little as you like. Every dollar you donate empowers women to become economically independent community leaders and contributors.
You can donate by:
- Credit card or PayPal on the right side of this page.
- Check payable to “WIL of Greater Philadelphia” sent to:WIL of Greater Philadelphia
c/o Bobbi Cohen
1901 JFK Blvd., #1208
Philadelphia, PA 19103
WIL’s 2016 Empowerment Grants
(Submitted by Adele Lindenmeyr, committee chair)
The Empowerment Grants Committee is pleased to announce that with the generous support of WIL, we were able to provide funds totaling $6000 in grants of between $500 and $1000 to eight of the fourteen organizations that submitted applications. Here are the organizations that received grants, with descriptions of them and their funded projects in their own words. The committee members hope that you will find them as inspiring as we did.
1. Artesanos Don Bosco, Peru ($500)
The grant from WIL provides seed funding for the creation of a children’s library and an after-school English language learning program project for girls, ages 6 to 8, in Jangas Peru, a small town where educational opportunities for girls are extremely limited. Native English-speaking volunteers from the Artesanos Don Bosco Cooperative work under the direction of Theresa Ramos, Program Development Coordinator at the Free Library of Philadelphia. The project includes a thematic-based, age-appropriate curriculum, employing authentic children’s literature supplemented with a rich selection of music, crafts, and games. Girls from six to eight years old, a critical age for language acquisition, will be recruited through ADBC staff. Sessions will take place in space provided and furnished by the Cooperative. ADBC will maintain the space, and the volunteers trained by Theresa will sustain the program during the months between Theresa’s ongoing visits. The model of an English enrichment after-school program for girls may be customized and replicated in other Don Bosco cooperatives. The project is planning two sessions that will introduce 15 young girls to English. The expected outcome is that participating girls will have a working vocabulary of at least 100 words at the end of 3 weeks. More important, they will have expanded their world view, acquired the confidence to continue their learning with the support of trained volunteers, and ultimately be able to gain meaningful employment in the area’s burgeoning trekking and hospitality industry.
2. HauGo Memorial Hostel, Myanmar ($1000)
The WIL Empowerment Grant will provide educational opportunities for girls in the Chin State in Myanmar to attend HauGo Memorial Hostel. HMH was officially founded in June 2009 by the NGO Southern Tedim Baptist Association (STBA), and opened for students on June 2010. Generally, students arrive on Sunday and stay in the hostel for 5 school days, going back to their villages on Friday. Others stay the full week or months to spend more time studying, and many students stay at the hostel instead of returning to their villages during the monsoon season when mountain trails are more treacherous. Currently, the student body ratio at HMH is 1 girl to 3 boys. Girls are dissuaded from getting an education because they are required to help on family farms. The grant will give girls from remote mountain villages the opportunity to get an education. It will be used for tuition, school supplies and for school infrastructure needs, (dorms, outhouses). It will encourage the girls, their parents, and the community at large. They will become Chin Hill “Malalas.”
3. Hispaniola Health Partners: “See and Treat” Cervical Cancer Screening in Rural Haiti ($1000)
HHP used its WIL grant to help advance its network of support and continuation for the cervical screening program that HHP began in 2013. According to GHESKIO, a Haitian research and health care organization in Port-au-Prince, “Haiti has the highest reported incidence of cervical cancer of any country in the world, with 94 cases per 100,000 population. Cervical cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Haitian women with an estimated 1,500 deaths annually.” Because of the scarcity of resources for screening and treatment, the incidence of cervical cancer in Haiti is 50 times more common than in the USA. Cervical cancer can strike down a woman in the prime of her life, motherhood and economic potential.
With support from WIL HHP conducted the third round of training of nurses and doctors in the procedure of VIA/cryo or “See and Treat” in the spring of 2016. The WIL grant provided support for a supervisor for existing programs, for replenishing equipment, and for funding refresher trainings at the HHP clinic in Marre Joffrey, Haiti, SE Department, opened in February 2016. The new clinic serves as a central resource/support center for health care providers doing VIA/cryo in the zone, and HHP’s supervising nurse visits sites where there are problems to trouble-shoot. After personnel are trained in the procedure, in collaboration with the Haitian Ministry of Health (MSPP), HHP will contract one nurse and an alternate to offer screenings and treatment in the zone. HHP also donates the equipment necessary for cryotherapy to MSPP. Working within MSPP’s infrastructure, the program will be regularly promoted by a network of community health workers. Until these services are fully embraced and guaranteed by the Ministry, HHP is committed to continue to serve the 50,000 women who have yet to be screened in the region.
4. Mediators Beyond Borders International, Southeast Asia ($1000)
Globally women are positioned to influence social change as never before. Political turmoil and transition, and the upheaval of conflict, are painful without a doubt, and many challenges lie ahead. But with skillful, continual participation, women can transform their regions into more vibrant, inclusive societies with sustainable peace and development. MBBI positions women to make this kind of impact. Building on the International Training Institute (ITI), established 5 years ago by MBBI, our goal is to enhance the skills of women as peace leaders in order to resolve conflicts, heal communities, and lead peace processes.
This year’s efforts are focused on women from SE Asia. MBBI will use its empowerment grant from WIL to help support for travel and training scholarships for women from Cambodia, Indonesia, Nepal, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. These women will complete five days of advanced mediation and community leadership training in Djakarta, Indonesia, during MBB’s 4th International Training Institute (ITI), which convenes this year in July. As part of their ITI scholarship trainees further participate in at least six months of sustained consultation and mentoring for the implementation of Alternative Dispute Resolution and peace building projects in their home countries as planned during the Training Institute; to facilitate mutually-supportive relationships with relevant governmental, NGO, community, and project support organizations to sustain these projects; and participation in inter-regional relationships with women who are ITI cohort graduates actively involved in ADR and peace building projects in other regions to strengthen peer support and resources available to ITI trainees.
5. Schools for Sustainability, Dominican Republic ($500)
Residents of the Dominican Republic have identified access to clean water as essential to help alleviate poverty and provide opportunities for community growth. A new program, “Clean Drinking Water for Dominicans,” seeks to purify and distribute water to approximately 2500 women in the Sabana Grande de Boya, Monte Plata community in the Dominican Republic. Public groundwater systems there are polluted by industries connecting their industrial sewage system to the sanitary system. The use of unsafe water has led to 15% of all maternal deaths 6 weeks after childbirth. In response, Schools for Sustainability, Inc. (S4S) is collaborating with 33 Buckets, Hilfsprojekt, stuents from the Illinois Institute of Art-Schaumburg, and local Dominican leaders to establish a sustainable, locally-managed water purification project to provide affordable clean water for approximately 5,000 community members. S4S’s innovative distribution model seeks to ensure that the water project is maintained for years to come. The grant from WIL helps support the organization of a Water Advisory Committee of local leaders to oversee, maintain, and track the progress of the water project. Additionally, S4S works with local leaders and schools to educate community members on the importance of clean water, sanitation and hygiene.
6. To’Kallos Life Academy: Life Skills for Girls in Nigeria ($600)
To’Kallos Life Academy is a capacity building and life enhancement non-profit for women with a robust curriculum that is progressive in nature i.e. a life school with different clusters of classes-focusing on the different phases of a woman’s growth, life and journey. The Academy serves as a life coach, guiding women on their journey through life, and providing platforms through which ladies can be empowered to the end that they become self-reliant and employed for a life of significance and relevance and actively contributing to the progress of the society in which she lives. For the second year, WIL has provided a grant to support a “Life Schools for Girls,” a five-day intensive development program for girls aged 11-17. The program seeks to challenge the stereotypic mindsets of Nigerian girls, and help them in-depth and profound self-awareness and increased self-esteem. The Life School will connect girls with mentors, while establishing a model for a more holistic curriculum and approach for female primary and secondary education.
7. Urban Promise International, Malawi ($750)
With six sites in Malawi, Africa, Urban Promise International (UPI) works in under- resourced and impoverished areas with children and youth by supporting after-school tutoring programs, summer camps, tuition-free high schools and two Safe Haven homes for orphans. UPI currently working with nearly 1600 children and youth. Malawi is one of the poorest countries in Africa with high rates of child marriage and abuse against women. UPI’s programs offer educational support, sex and HIV education, personal hygiene, teaching about women’s rights, spiritual mentoring and advocacy. The in-country staff works with over 100 girls at a time, many of whom have experienced physical, emotional and sexual abuse. Dedicated and hard-working, the staff often do not have the resources or education themselves to navigate the challenges that come with running these programs. WIL’s grant supports a one-day training session for twenty female staff in Malawi to equip them with skills in counseling, trauma therapy and women’s rights. The training workshop will enable staff members from UPI’s different sites to get together and share best practices, while also providing an opportunity to encourage, bless and empower the female staff to continue to do the transformative work of the girls’ empowerment program.
8. Women Against Violence and Exploitation in Society (WAVES), Sierra Leone ($750)
Violence against women and girls in the Bo District of Sierra Leone is a common phenomenon. The Bo North area is unique in terms of its geographical location, with rough terrains, dangerous hills and bridges, mostly waterlogged during rains. These peculiar features make the area very challenging and the local inhabitants, especially women and girls, less informed about their rights and more vulnerable to violence. The grant from WIL will be used to raise awareness about the protection of women and girls, especially their body integrity. The project aims to benefit up to 300 women and girls in three chiefdoms through their participation in workshops on sexual autonomy and body integrity to address teenage pregnancy, and on violence against women to combat sexual assault and abuse.
Empowerment Grant Committee
Adele Lindenmeyr, Chair