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...
Mar 20, 2012

A Center of Learning and Empowerment

In rural Kenya, Indigenous communities often do not have the resources to send their daughters to school. Instead, many girls are compelled into early marriages (sometimes as young as nine years old) and forced to undergo female genital mutilation (FGM).

The Nanyori Shelter Network is one of the few chances girls have to pursue secondary education in rural Kenya. With MADRE support, the Indigenous Information Network (IIN) provides girls with safety, shelter and education. Girls receive crucial support and schooling from a network of women committed to their empowerment.

Lucy Mulenkei, founder of the IIN,  knows that education is critical to breaking the oppressive cycle of poverty amongst rural women and girls in Kenya. Currently, she is working on a project that will provide scholarships for girls with the desire—but not the resources—to attend school. She believes that graduating girls will return to their communities with the resources, knowledge and conviction to inspire others to follow similar paths.

“In the future, they can come and help others because some of us also grew up in such situations where we were educated by somebody. We grew up knowing that we were helped, so we have to help others. I do believe that the little you do can make a difference, no matter how small it is. It can always make a difference and change the people’s lives.”

Mar 15, 2012

Amplifying the Voices of Ixil Women

Before the war, Dona Catarina Matom lived peacefully with her two daughters and husband in Nebaj,
Guatemala.

But escalating violence and war soon spread to her village. Soldiers brutally plundered homes and then
set them ablaze. Escaping violence, Dona and her family fled to the mountains—where they faced
disease, sickness, cold and extreme hunger.

After weeks of hiding, they relocated to Caba Chajul, Guatemala. “We were chased by soldiers, we
always tried to hide. There were constant bombings. My daughter Rosa was good and healthy but one day
I can not remember which, a bomb fell near my daughter Rosa and now she is currently deaf,” said Dona.

In Caba Chajul, Dona’s husband was captured by soldiers. She struggled to raise her daughters on her
own, constantly worrying about how to provide them with food. Often, they were forced to subsist off a
meager diet of wilted herbs and plants.

But Dona no longer has to worry about how she will feed her children. Now, she has the essential skills
and resources to provide for her family, thanks to your support through GlobalGiving’s Sustainable
Chicken Farm for Guatemalan Women project.

MADRE works with Muixil, a community based organization of Indigenous Ixil women in
Guatemala. Together, MADRE and Muixil created Farming for the Future, a collective income-
generating project that provides the Ixil women living in poverty with economic independence
and food security and empowers them to demand their political rights.

When the sustainable chicken farming project began in 2007, Muixil and MADRE were
able to provide 30 women with chickens, but over the years the project has increased
substantially. Over the past year, at least 48 women (16 from each of the three communities)
have participated in and benefited from the chicken project. Additionally, the sustainable chicken
farms have provided food security, better nutrition, and a means of generating small amounts of
income for the families involved.

“Before, I was very poor and scared, I never spoke…But Muixil accepted me and I participate in
trainings, meetings and now participate in the community and I have no fear. I know I have the same
rights as men. I received the support from MUIXIL and I thank all the women who help us in other
countries far away,” said Dona.

Mar 1, 2012

Relief and Support for Famine Survivors

As drought spread, Halima desperately struggled to feed her six children.

“We had many herds of cattle before the drought when my husband was alive,” shared Halima. But after the death of her husband, food supplies quickly dwindled.

“My children had nothing to eat for many days…It was painful to watch them succumb to hunger.”

But now, Halima doesn’t have to watch her children suffer from hunger. She has the resources to sustain her children, thanks to the distribution of food and supplies through MADRE’s Help Families Fleeing Famine in Somalia project.

“I am very happy,” Halima told MADRE’s sister organization, Womankind Kenya. “I am glad you have helped the situation and now my children will be safe.”

For the countless women like Halima who have lost their homes and their families, not having to worry about feeding their children makes a huge impact.

We are happy to hear about the positive impacts of our initiatives through the voices of women affected.  Halima is one example of the many women that MADRE’s programs will continue to impact.  

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