Light in Our Home is planning to do their follow-up issue study in January, in order to assess their impact. They have also been working with district officials to recognize the people who benefitted from their program as public examples of the team's work in reducing gender-based violence.
GLOBAL GRASSROOTS UPDATE
Global Grassroots is proud to present our interactive annual magazine, Portraits of Transformation, available online at www.globalgrassroots.org/annualmagazine
Meet the individuals, families, and communities that drive our work.
Explore stories of personal growth and social change, told through photography, writing, and video.
Discover inspiration in their reflections, challenges, and triumphs.
...Please join us in celebrating our impact in 2011, and looking ahead to new growth and continued transformation in 2012.
Global Grassroots works to support women change agents among survivors of war and disaster. Under-served, undereducated, and overburdened, these women would otherwise lack the resources to promote systemic change. But they have profound wisdom about their communities and innovative ideas for social change. Their resilience, courage, and creativity are transforming the world, one community at a time.
These are their stories…
"The [Global Grassroots] training has taught me to think big... Now, I can go somewhere and knock and ask for a grant or anything. Apart from that, in my own community, I have become a conflict resolver. If in the neighborhood there is a conflict, women come to me – they trust me. I go with them to solve those conflicts. It helps me to change the quality of life in my community.”
- Jeanette Muteteri, treasurer of Have a Good Life
“Now I feel like I can move... I can join the other people...I have come to understand my own value. I know that I can participate in the team. I can help them; I can give my ideas.”
- Christine Nyirandeya, team advisor of People of Love
Light in Our home recently selected a number of community members to honor, based on behavior changes with regard to how they treat the women in their families, following the team’s anti-violence campaign and trainings. They plan to hold a public ceremony and to give these selected households each a goat. The goat will be part of the award for promoting peace in their families, but will also become part of the team’s fundraising efforts, as the goats’ offspring will be sold to support Light in Our Home. Their efforts have gained the attention of local government officials, who have pledged to help support their advocacy campaign with a small grant.
Release of Global Grassroots’ 2011 Impact Assessment:
Over the course of ten weeks, Julia Oakley, a dual Masters student from Columbia University conducted an independent impact assessment of our Academy for Conscious Change in Rwanda. The following is an excerpt. Download our full Impact Assessment here.
The social impact of Global Grassroots via its trained and funded ventures is approximately 32,500 Rwandans... Most teams are able to measure their social impact in some form, and all operating Global Grassroots ventures have visible signs of positive impact on their communities. Some, like Let Us Build Ourselves and Construct the Family, work intensively with their target populations; others, such as Light In Our Home, have more of an indirect but possibly widespread social impact….Global Grassroots should support teams to maximize their potential social impact on one hand, but continue to prioritize self-initiated growth and idea generation on the other. Global Grassroots' strategy of participatory development in fostering the creativity and levering the inner knowledge of local persons is its strongest asset and its key to sustainable social impact.
On vocational skills and health/women's rights training for vulnerable populations:
“I know how to claim my rights and how to help other women to claim their rights, too. This helps me be safe and independent.” -Beneficiary of Construct the Family
On girls’ sanitation and reproductive health:
"Now I am able to discuss with my children reproductive health and change of life, and tell them this is normal. I encourage them to share this with me. Before, I was ashamed to talk about it, but now I no longer have that shame and I can advise them about the consequences of their actions. This project has helped me to know my responsibilities as a parent and as a neighbor. We need to support girls and promote a bright future for them." -Beneficiary of Think About The Young Girls
Global Grassroots Hosts Training for New Conscious Change Practitioners
This fall, Global Grassroots hosted seven women representing three countries (America, Rwanda, and Haiti) to participate in the first training of trainers in our curriculum, methodology, philosophy and trauma-healing skills for the Academy for Conscious Change. Over the course of two weeks, participants learned how to work with traumatized populations, how to use mind-body skills to reset the nervous system and address post-traumatic stress, how to use participatory development methods to catalyze locally-led solutions in a developing country among a foreign culture, how to use their own understanding of personal transformation to support conscious leadership in others, and how to develop a sustainable non-profit from scratch. Having completed the curriculum training, these new Conscious Change Practitioners will next conduct a pilot volunteer training with a partner organization in the US, and participate in a year-long correspondence course in personal transformation for change agents. Once certified, Global Grassroots Practitioners will take a leadership role in expanding our programs in new countries with interested partner organizations. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more about how to bring Global Grassroots' Academy for Conscious Change to your community.
Global Grassroots Founder featured in Huffington Post:
Gretchen Wallace Empowers Women In Rwanda And Other Post-Conflict Societies
Our work has only been possible with your support, and we extend our deepest gratitude. We know that women have the potential to lead conscious social change, but many lack the resources and training to advance their own ideas. We need engaged investors to help us continue to support women’s initiatives for social change. Please consider a donation to help Global Grassroots continue to support the social ventures of grassroots change agents worldwide.
As you know, Light in our Home decided to address the problem of gender-based violence by educating the community on the negative impacts of violence against women. Many Rwandans believe that women should accept domestic violence without complaint, a problem that is exacerbated by the fact that many women are completely dependent on their husbands. Light in our Home has begun a comprehensive training program that will have far reaching impacts. Recently, Light in our Home completed its 12 month non-profit management apprenticeship and has officially graduated from the Academy for Conscious Change. The organization will now join the growing Global Grassroots fellowship of graduate change agents.
We are excited to share, Global Grassroots has begun the development of a web-based eAcademy for Conscious Change, which will allow women’s groups in developing countries globally to access our social entrepreneurship curriculum online. To date, we have received emails from over 160 women’s groups from 45 different countries requesting our programs. We will be choosing a pilot group of women's organizations from four continents to participate in the beta version of the elearning program. Our online academy will be accessible for free, providing an interactive program that will support the development of grassroots-level social entrepreneurship projects. We anticipate the development of the site will be complete in late autumn for piloting, with a public launch in early 2012.
Next week Global Grassroots will launch its new Conscious Social Change certification program, with seven women from three countries. Once certified, this corps of trainees will be able to deploy globally to offer our core program upon request to partner organizations. Global Grassroots is eager to collaborate through partnership to support women change agents in new communities.
This progress has only been possible with your support and we extend our deepest gratitude. As we expand, Global Grassroots needs engaged investors to help us make these exciting possibilities a reality. We know that women have the potential to lead conscious social change, but many lack the resources and training to advance their own ideas. Please consider a donation to help Global Grassroots continue to support the social ventures of grassroots change agents worldwide.
In the Byimana and Ruhango sectors of rural Rwanda, Light in Our Home is working to end all forms of gender-based violence (GBV). The project is educating local leaders about the causes and consequences of violence and forming anti-violence clubs in each local neighborhood. Where sexual violence has emerged as an issue in the primary and secondary schools, the team is also committed to raising awareness and providing resources to help its victims and stop the cycles of violence.
In February, the team held a district-wide training on GBV, which was organized by the Gender Monitoring Officer and engaged a number of local officials, including coordinators the National Youth Council in Ruhango, the Directing Doctor of Gitwe Hospital, and several security agents and justice agents. This training offered information about how to report cases of GBV and also identified resources and local officials that women and children could seek for help with GBV issues. The team also provided trainings for 60 education professionals, where they taught lessons on GBV causes and consequences, civil law, and human rights law. Those trainees have been given the equipment and materials that will enable them to do follow-up work in their communities.
All district schools have also been asked to build a room for girls to use when they are menstruating. The private space will protect them from sexual assault that they may face in the unisex latrines, and will encourage girls to attend school consistently rather than being absent for several days each month.
Finally, Light in Our Home presented its program to Care International and received a donation of Rwf 300,000 (around $600), to be used for the celebration of International Women’s Day. Light in our Home was the one of the teams selected to be in charge of preparing the day’s events
Global Grassroots is currently preparing to expand our Academy to Northern Uganda to serve women and girls abducted and forced to serve as combatants and sex slaves by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Thousands of women have returned home after the war, many of them traumatized, stigmatized, HIV-positive, and caring for children. While there are many initiatives working to rehabilitate male former child soldiers, there are far fewer resources for women who are returning with the added trauma of having experienced sexual violence. We conducted an extensive feasibility study in late February/early March, speaking with individuals and organizations about the landscape of need and opportunities for partnership in Uganda. Having met with over 20 local organizations throughout the northern region of the country, we have identified strong potential partners and have chosen to locate our program in the Pader district. We intend to initiate the Academy program for at least 5 new teams in Uganda later this year.
We have also had over 100 women’s groups in 40 countries request our programs. This summer, we will launch a web-based eAcademy which will allow our training curriculum to be accessible online to serve this broader need and to disseminate our social entrepreneurship curriculum globally through local internet cafes. Global Grassroots' e-learning Academy will allow us to deliver our program through a free subscription service to grassroots teams throughout the developing world. In so doing, we will provide training, skills and tools to support small-scale, grassroots-level social entrepreneurship among underserved women’s groups in impoverished countries. In most cases, these women would have no other access to the training needed to start their own non-profits and design their own solutions to the social issues in their communities.
During this time of growth, Global Grassroots needs engaged investors to join with us to actualize these exciting new possibilities. Our vision is that all women will have the capacity and resources to lead conscious social change, sustained by their own communities. You can help to make this a reality. Please consider a donation to help Global Grassroots continue to support the social ventures of grassroots change agents worldwide.
LIGHT IN OUR HOME PROGRESS UPDATE
This social venture led by a local headmaster who also ran for Parliament this past year, is working to fight against all forms of gender-based violence. The project is educating local leaders about the causes and consequences of violence and forming anti-violence clubs in each local neighborhood. The venture, launched in late March has already conducted its first training with local officials from 33 different sectors, including high school principals, District advisory council members, and the head of security in the Ruhango District, about the causes, consequences, relevant laws and forms of gender-based violence (GBV). Consequently, two schools created anti-GBV clubs. The clubs are mobilizing students to report GBV cases that occur at school and are then following up on the cases. At the government level, the district advisory council members who received training successfully advocated for funding, and the Ruhango District distributed 1,800,000 FRW ($3,076) for fighting GBV in nine sectors. In October, Light in Our Home trained another 164 people including 127 local authorities, members of the National Women’s Council, members of the National Youth Committee, eight local representative members of the President’s Advisory Council and eight Executive Secretaries at the local government level. They are working to develop new anti-GBV clubs and strengthen existing ones. They also recently conducted a survey of their beneficiaries and are in the process of analyzing the data. We look forward to continuing to update you on their progress in the coming months.
GLOBAL GRASSROOTS YEAR-END UPDATE AND LOOKING AHEAD TO 2011
2010 has been a turning point for Global Grassroots. We have endured hardship with the economic downturn, but are emerging leaner, more creative and more strategic. We’ve evaluated our social impact, repositioned our training program as the Academy for Conscious Change and integrated new mind-body practices for trauma healing. We’ve brought these holistic practices to earthquake survivors in Haiti and, by request, to American relief workers serving in disaster zones. We’ve doubled the number of civil society organizations our Academy has helped launch in Rwanda, and are investing in technology and partnerships to expand our reach. Today, our 300 Rwandan change agents have established 16 non-profit organizations, which are working at the root level of a social issue facing women and girls, benefiting an estimated 10,000+ people each year.
As we move forward into 2011, we have over 100 women’s groups in 40 countries requesting our programs. In response, we are expanding our hands-on approach into Northern Uganda next and embarking upon a web-based eAcademy for Conscious Change to reach women worldwide through local internet cafes. We are developing new courses, based on our core curriculum, for a range of new audiences, including students, donors and practitioners. And we are preparing to package and license our program model for partner organizations to implement in regions we have yet to explore.
Global Grassroots needs engaged investors to join with us and our change agents in a three-part-partnership to actualize the possibilities in front of us. We invite you to read more about our progress in our 2010 Year-End Magazine (available for download on our home page: www.globalgrassroots.org) and consider a donation to help Global Grassroots continue to support the social ventures of grassroots change agents worldwide.
GLOBAL GRASSROOTS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that supports conscious social change for women in post-conflict societies. Our Academy for Conscious Change is a 12-18 month social venture incubator, offering non-profit management skills, leadership training, personal transformation practices, seed grants and high-engagement support that enables vulnerable women change agents to launch their own grassroots solutions benefiting women and girls. JOIN US.
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