In the spirit of Christmas and as the year come to a close, we would like to thank you again for your past generosity to Foundation for Women’s Advancement. We would also like to share with you the great work of our partners in 2018. They continue enabling countless women and girls to achieve what they never thought they could reach. More importantly, working together, they discover their value and self-worth and that of those around them. Because of our partners’ work, these women and their families know that their advancement does not lie in them experiencing their capacity to achieve more than what they had ever dreamed. Rather, it lies in the realization that human beings are all inter-connected and caring for each other is both a natural reaction and a need. If given the opportunity, they can produce an extraordinary return from an investment in their education and training and therefore lift up their families and communities. This success would have not been possible without your commitment and contributions!

• From Kenya, we learned that the last of the entrepreneurship training series took place few weeks ago. Of special interest was the session on Digital Marketing, where participants were taught to market their products using social media platforms. Mildred Mafura and Jacqueline Mwaura, who previously benefited from the training you helped sponsored, were invited to give their experience about how new horizons were opened up by the training and the help received, enabling them to set up and run their successful businesses.

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• Sorowell, continues preparing young women in Cameroon to enter the growing hospitality and tourism industry in the country. These young women, who come from poor and difficult family environments, would have dropped out of primary school. Instead, they are completing their high school and professional studies. Severine and other recent graduates are working in Yaoundé’s leading hotels. They are now in a position to help support their families, to educate the little sisters and brothers, and to pay for medicine. Furthermore, Sorawell has become a reference point for the Ministry of Employment and Vocational Training, which seeks to raise the quality of vocational education in Cameroon and support the Government's effort for development of Tourism, in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism.


• In the Philippines, Kabataan continues to work with young women, ages 12 to 18. These students come from poor families who live in slums of Muntinlupa City, Metro Manila. Their families have no stable source of income and if it were not for Kabattan, only 10% of them would complete high school. Crysjoy and Eloisa, both alumnae of Kabataan, are now enrolled in the two-year Dual Training Program in the Food & Beverage Services course of Punlaan School and are both presidents of their respective classes. When asked what inspires her to overcome the challenges she faces in life, Crysjoy talked about the “STRONG virtues” (Steadfast, Trustworthy, Respectful, Open-minded, Noble, Gutsy) that she learned in Kabataan. Their outreach continues to grow. In addition to the 280 girls they directly work with, this year they offered family support courses to 240 mothers and teacher’s training to 160 teachers from schools in the area.

• Moving to central Europe, Slenis Cultural Center in Lithuania continues to engage young women to strengthen social and civic institutions through different activities. The activities included Human Service Leadership through which several voluntary activities were initiated by young professional women. Also seminars were organized on spirit of cooperation as well as solidarity in the XXI century for high school and college age students.

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• This past September, I had the opportunity to meet with Marcela Zimerman, Director of Protege tu Corazón in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Their work has expanded from reaching only teachers and students, to training parents so to help their children, more effectively, be persons of character, who recognize their value and are able to make responsible choices especially related to their sexuality and other issues, such as drugs and alcohol. This year they have started in several new provinces and expanded their reach in Buenos Aires.


• Las Gravileas in Guatemala, offered several entrepreneurial training courses to women in need. They generate a lasting impact in them and in their families. Maira tells us that she has learned at Gravileas how to develop as a woman, to help strengthen her family, and also how to help her husband and children. “I have been able to show my children that we can move ahead with our work, if we do it well and with love. My son was very ill. The doctors gave him a year of life. We did not have the money to buy the medicines he needed, but thanks to Gravileas’ training, I was able to start my business and, with that income, I was able to buy medicines for my son. … He is now 17 years old. He has seen that we had to work hard to save his life and move ahead. I am very proud of my son. He does not take things for granted. Whenever I need to leave things unfinished at home, he and my other children help to finish them. This is the reality we live in my home, because all what I learned professionally and as a person at Gravileas, I brought it home.”

These are some of the real differences our partners in the U.S., Africa, Asia, Central America, and Central Europe are making in real women and their families. Going forward with your help, we can continue to build together and make a real difference in the lives of these women and their families.

On behalf of everyone at the Foundation for Women’s Advancement and of the 276,392 persons that have been reached in the past eight years, we wish you and your family a peace-filled and restful Christmas season and a Happy New Year.

The Foundation for Women's Advancement First Virtual Benefit

Join us Friday, October 28 for the First Virtual Benefit: Building Bridges to Opportunity in Kenya

This year our benefit will be held in a different style than usual. Unlike traditional benefits, ours will not have a formal location. Instead, we invite all our supporters to reflect on the work we have done thus far from the comfort of your homes.

We have chosen to do this because instead of spending money on the event, we want to ensure that 100% of your donations go directly to our programs. By saving costs on the venue, dress, and catering, we can put more resources into helping the lives of girls and women across the globe.

GET YOUR TICKET TODAY! We invite you to join us on Friday, October 28th to reflect on the progress that we have made and look forward to our plans for the future, particularly in our entrepreneurial program for women in Kenya. Click here to make your donation for the Foundation for Women's Advancement 2016 Benefit and help women across the globe.

Foundation for Women's Advancement Launched

After seven years of work in five continents, and more than 179,000 real girls, women, and their families reached, Foundation SCA is changing its name to Foundation for Women's Advancement. The reason is simple. The new name captures more clearly what we do: help girls and women around the world live with dignity and build brighter futures for themselves, their families, and their communities."

High School Scholarships in Wanjohi Farm Completed

Foundation WA is celebrating the completion of our high school scholarship program in Wanjohi Farm. The students graduated in 2015, and now are moving on to College. In closing the year, Kianda Foundation tells us:

Some of the Wanjohi Farm high school graduates.

Some of the Wanjohi Farm high school graduates.

”When talking to them it is very beautiful to realize how different they are now, from four years ago when we met them. They are more confident, happier and with big hopes of a different future from the one they thought they were going to have. They worked hard to successfully finish their secondary education and to attain the grades that would enable them to join the university. They are especially encouraged because of the university student who worked with them last year... Now they realize that they also can be able to pursue further education. ... Their parents had to leave the home they had and their jobs… Ann’s parents run with their six children and did not manage to carry anything with them. The parents were very happy that none of their children died. They are now casual laborers in the area and they manage to cater for the basic needs of their family, but could not have hoped of sending their daughter to secondary school. It is moving to see the joy that is for them to have had her in a boarding school and finished with her studies. They have great hope on her. Ann wants to pursue mass communication after her secondary education.” (End of Year Report, 2015) 

Women Entrepreneurship Training

Foundation in 2016 to provide entrepreneurship training to 200 women.  Some of them live in Wanjohi Farm.  The aim is to help these women generate the income needed to escape poverty for themselves and their families.

The impact of the training is already felt.  

Anne with two of her children attending her business

Anne with two of her children attending her business

Anne Wanjiku Njenga is 36 years old and lives with her husband and 4 children. The husband is a driver, but does not have a permanent job. Anne attended the business course and, as she says, suddenly realized what she could do. Until then she reared between 20 to 30 chickens for eggs, and the rest of the time she would sell bars of soap from house to house. Her problem was that she was selling the soap on credit and most of the clients didn't pay her, in addition to having a very small profit margin. Then she decided to start a store in a central site of the village with 20 dollars. She paid the rent of the premises of 2 x 2 meters with 12 dollars for the first month and, with the remaining 8 dollars, she bought milk and fruits. Now she sells in the store her eggs, milk, a traditional porridge, tea with milk, fruit... (e.g. she buys several watermelons and sells them sliced making a profit of 70%). She says that when people ask her for a bun with the cup of tea, she goes running to another store and buys it for her client, but as soon as she earns a little more she will buy a small cooker and will bake it herself, as well as frying eggs, etc. Later on she also wants to put electricity and buy a refrigerator to sell more milk.

Anne at her charcoal store

Anne at her charcoal store

Jane had tried various businesses but she did not know how to keep her accounts and how to separate her business money from her daily family expenses. After participating in the training, she realized all the things that had gone wrong in her previous businesses. Using the new business tools she learned, she now could create a successful business around a skill she had learned a long time

Anne and her husband

Anne and her husband

ago -- making charcoal. Along with her husband, she now makes an 'eco-fiendly' charcoal that last longer, is cheaper, and does not produce smoke, which is best for the environment and people's health. They have already purchased a machine that compresses the product and have many customers -- including several hotels in the area.  They are happy, and her husband, who is now retired, is very proud of his wife.


WA Welcomes New Members to the Board of Directors

Maricel and Charlie P. Heeter,  Jr. joined the Foundation for Women's Advancement Board of Directors.          

Maricel worked several years as the Director of Development for Oackcrest School. She is now the Director of Proyecto Iuventus.

Charlie was Managing Director at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. He directed the Deloitte global public policy programme. He was also the Chairman of the Business and Industry Advisory Committee, OECD.