Margaret Owino, Nairobi, Kenya: Margaret travels to remote, dangerous areas in Kenya teaching solar cooking as a fuel saving and life-giving skill. She is also very active in two women’s self-help groups. Her aim is to alleviate women’s heavy burdens such as fuelwood collection, purchasing and preparing food and the possibility of reprisals from her husband if she doesn’t provide these well. She has helped women to empower themselves through her work.
Gyorgyi Toth, Budapest, Hungary: Gyorgyi is part of a women’s organization called NANE. She helped to start a Silent Witness exhibit in the 1990s. Hungary was one of the first countries to start an exhibit outside the US. Gyorgyi risks her life in a political arena that is dangerous fighting to get domestic violence high on the agenda of law enforcement and politicians.
Irma (Mimi) de Maza, Ciudad de Guatemala: Mimi travels around Guatemala to poverty and war-torn areas helping women with breastfeeding and mother-to-mother support projects. She faces many risks in her work as women, traveling alone and helping women to feel empowered. Since corporations often try and manipulate women into using formula which creates malnutrition problems when the mothers who live in poverty can not afford to continue to use the formula.
Nze Marita, Lagos, Nigeria: Nze is a widow and mother of eight. Despite her own hardships, physical limitations and living in a country where women are considered second class, she has a passion for women. She travels the rural areas of Nigeria educating women and girls through workshops on food and nutrition, mediation settlements of disputes, developmental initiatives and her positive approach to problems the women face.
Maralyn Bamabridge, Brantham, Suffolk: Maralyn founded Engalynx in response to a need she saw among families in Rwanda during the civil war in the 1990s. At first, she used her photoshop as a place to gather materials such as sewing machines and bicycles to be shipped to Rwanda. Eventually, she started raising money, and since retiring she has been working with orphanages and children-headed families to try to improve their lives in a number of ways including better medical treatment.
Jewel Cowan, Greenville, Michigan: Jewel gives of her self, her time, her home and her personal resources to help women and children leaving domestic violence situations. She also opens her home as a foster parent for special needs children. Jewel works in her community to help women and children with needed resources. She helps them in dealing with the red tape involved with getting any assistance. She helps with a safe house and has used her personal cell phone as a 24-hour hotline for women.
Maritza de Juan, Tampa, FL: Maritza knows first hand the trauma of living in a homeless shelter. She is an amazing woman that has used her savvy to begin the process of forming a non-profit to help other women and children. She has used her own limited resources to help others. She works in her community to help women and children with needed resources. She offers classes from etiquette to business development.
Sarah Longley, Delmar, New York: Sarah has used her professional skills in culinary arts as a means of teaching domestic violence victims a job skill. She has selflessly used her own resources to start her project that enables battered women to get back in the workforce. The food her “students” prepare is used to feed senior citizens in her community. In addition to the culinary arts training, she has organized a group of professionals to offer emotional support, counseling, yoga/meditation, and application/interview skills.