MADRE, An International Women's Human Rights Org.

MADRE's mission is to advance women's human rights by meeting urgent needs in communities and building lasting solutions to the crises women face. MADRE works towards a world in which all people enjoy the fullest range of individual and collective human rights; in which resources are shared equitably and sustainably; in which women participate effectively in all aspects of society; and in which people have a meaningful say in policies that affect their lives. MADRE's vision is enacted with an understanding of the inter-relationships between the various issues we address and by a commitment to working in partnership with women at the local, regional and international levels who share our go...
Jan 4, 2012

The Usme Youth Center

MADRE's sister organization, Taller de Vida, works tirelessly to provide safe spaces for young people who have been former child soldiers or are at risk for being recruited. MADRE is supporting Taller de Vida to re-open a Youth Center in Usme. The Usme Youth Center will have youth programs which will allow young people to share their experiences and speak openly against violence through art, music and performance. These forms of art therapy, guided by professional art therapists and counselors, allow youth to heal from the traumas they've faced and rebuild their lives in a culture of peace.

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Dec 29, 2011

A Letter from Our Sisters at Zenab for Women in Development

As famine struck East Africa, our partners at Womankind Kenya mobilized to provide emergency food and water to refugees. The members of the Women Farmers Union in Sudan, founded by MADRE's sister organization Zenab for Women in Development, wrote the following letter to the members of Womankind Kenya.

To Our Sisters at Womankind Kenya,

We stand with you in this time of tragedy and hardship. As women farmers of Sudan, we know what it is like to wait months for rain and to watch our children grow hungry. Every year, when we plant our crops, our families depend on us. Without rain, we have no harvest – we have nothing.

We made our Women Farmers Union so that we could support each other. Before that, the government did not recognize women farmers and gave tools, seeds and training only to the men. So we came together to share our resources and to demand that the government respect our rights.

In eastern Sudan where we live, farming has always been part of our lives. But recently, the droughts have gotten worse, and they come more often. We had to adapt how we farm. This is because of climate change, a danger created mainly by those in the rich countries. 

Our friends at MADRE have helped us through the years, when the harvests have been good and also when the rains failed to come. They told us how refugee women and families are fleeing Somalia to Kenya. They told us that what you need are the resources to buy emergency food and water to help them live.

And so we are sending you the money that we saved after our last harvest. Usually, we use these savings to improve our communities. Last year, we put a roof on the local school. But this year, your needs are greater than ours. We are able to send you this money because we joined together as women farmers and made ourselves stronger. We hope you will be able to use this gift to feed your children and strengthen yourselves as women. 

We send this to you with our blessings. As mothers and as farmers, the future depends on us.

In solidarity,

Fatima Ahmed, Director of Zenab for Women in Development & The Women Farmers Union
Sudan
Dec 22, 2011

Stories from the Nanyori Shelter Network

c. MADRE
c. MADRE

MADRE is helping support the Nanyori Shelter Network, a group of six shelters in Kenya that feed and care for hundreds of girls who have escaped the cutting mat and forced marriage bed. Created by the Indigenous Information Network, MADRE's sister organization in Kenya, these shelters provide support and powerful incentive for girls to attend school. Hundreds of graduating girls will become teachers, nurses, social workers and lawyers who elevate entire communities.

Below, read stories from Kenyan women about the positive impact of the Nanyori Shelter Network in their communities.  

They call her “Gogo,” Swahili for grandmother

Pricilla Naisula Nangurai is the director of a school shelter in the Nanyori, or “You Are Loved” Network. Gogo has personally helped 702 young girls to escape harmful traditional practices including female genital mutilation and early forced marriage. The first girl brought into the shelter is now 25 years old and is currently studying medicine in Nairobi.  Go, Gogo!


A remarkable little girl

“Rose” is 13 years old, but at age 8, she had the courage to run away from home to escape female genital mutilation and forced marriage. She found her way to Gogo’s shelter, where she’s been ever since. Rose is excelling in her studies at the shelter and wants to grow up to be a women’s doctor. Still, she worries for her two younger sisters at home. She wants to do anything she can to save them from being married before they can finish school.

 
A mother who wouldn’t give up

When Mary learned of her husband’s intention to marry off her young daughter, at first she felt hopeless. She remembered her own marriage at just 14 years old and giving up her dreams of becoming a teacher. She wanted to protect her daughter but couldn’t see an alternative—yet she wouldn’t give up. Then she found out about the Nanyori Network of girls’ school shelters. Mary brought her daughter there. Now, the young girl is safe and has the chance to learn. She, too, wants to become a teacher—and she’s well on her way!


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