We have exciting news to share with you. MuJER has elected a local advisory committee based in Guatemala City compromised of sex workers, former sex workers, and women dedicated to working for the rights of sex workers. This is an important step in fulfilling the vision of transforming the organization into one that is led by sex-workers for sex-workers.
There is no organization like MuJER in Guatemala, whose mission is to empower sex-workers to transform their lives through education, self-esteem building, and community and political engagement. The new advisory committee furthers the mission, creating space for sex workers to participate in the decision-making and planning processes of the organization. And it takes the organization one step closer to greater empowerment of the sex-worker community.
This is a milestone for us.
We thank you for your continued support.
With Kind Regards,
Imagine not being able to write your name or to read a newspaper. Now imagine how your life would change if you learned to read and write.
MuJER serves sex workers in Guatemala City by offering basic literacy courses. For many this is the first time they have been able to study. For others this is a second chance to become literate and gain important life skills. After completing literacy courses, women gain self-confidence in knowing that they can read basic documents and express themselves in writing. Learning to read and write is a first step in self-empowerment.
Once women complete basic literacy courses, MuJER offers accelerated elementary courses and vocational programs in computer technology, English language, jewelry making, cosmetology, and floral arrangements.
Please consider making a donation today to continue to sustain MuJER’s Leer es Poder – Reading is Power program. We thank you for your support.
Warm Regards,MuJER’s Board of Directors
MuJER supports the dreams of each woman that comes to our Empowerment Center, by offering a variety of educational opportunities. Our flagship program, Reading is Power - Leer es Poder, offers literacy courses that are critical to building self-esteem in the women and for the success of our programs.
As women advance through our educational and vocational courses, many want to continue their education beyond the center's offerings to complete high school and degrees in technical trades. To meet this need, we offer $50 scholarships per semester to cover course registration. Without these scholarships the women would not be able to attend the accelerated high school program. These scholarships are essential in helping many women achieve their dreams.
Please consider making a donation in any amount to support Leer es Poder and our high school scholarships.
Thank you for your continued support.
"What is Love?" It's February 13th (the day before Valentine's day) and Flor de María Peña (the executive director) is leading a workshop for the women about love. They all sit in chairs, some with babies, one balancing an embroidery hoop on her knee as she works diligently away, and discuss the meaning of love. Flor writes down the suggestions as they come up: love is respect, it's dignity, it's forgiveness, it's listening.
The workshop ends and the women gather around to eat lunch and chat. The MuJER office provides a refuge where they can come during the day and drink a coffee, or take a class. It's a rare safe space, tucked behind a restaurant run by a former sex worker who took classes at MuJER, and then worked her way through high school and cooking classes, a place where the women are guaranteed not to be judged for their work as sex workers.
Flor says the number of sex workers in Guatemala is estimated to be about 35,000, and many are marginalized immigrants with few resources and less hope. Through classes in English, reading, jewerly-making, and basic education, MuJER is working to support these women so that they're future can be a bit brighter. Eventually they would also like to provide computer classes, however they need a few more computers first. Flor explains that these women often feel like, as immigrants, women and sex workers, they have no rights, and should they be treated badly, no recourses. Using basic education, supportive workshops, and the opportunity to make and sell small jewelry and embroidery, Flor and her staff are hoping to be able to help these women and their families to a brighter future. Looking around the room at the cluster of women drinking coffee, or making a necklace, as their children read "Madeline" or "Corduroy", it's impossible to not to catch their enthusiasm and optimism about the future.
Since 2005 MuJER has helped tens of women improve their literacy through our Leer es Poder (Reading is Power) program. As women have progressed through our vocational programs, more women have become interested in enrolling in high school. To meet this demand, the organization offers $50 scholarships per semester to cover tuition at an accrediated accelerated high school.
We are proud to share with you that Rosa, a member of the organization, recently became the second to complete high school with the support of these scholarships. Completing high school is a major accomplishment for our members because of the skills gained, the increase in job opportunites, and also because it continues to build self-esteem, and empowers the person to continue to set goals for herself. Rosa is a role model to other members - she is an example of all that the women can accomplish.
Please consider making a contribution to MuJER; remember that our relatively small scholarships are transforming the lives of women.
As always, thank you for your continued support.
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