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 ...
Nov 20, 2015

200 Solar Radios for Indigenous Women

Indigenous women living along Nicaragua's North Atlantic Coast rarely have opportunities to connect. They live far apart, in communities accessible only by a voyage of hours, or even days, on foot or by boat.

That's why the annual Indigenous Women's Forum, organized by MADRE's local partner group Wangki Tangni, is so vital. It gives women the chance to come together to share experiences. They can talk about the challenges they face, including violence. And they create solutions they can bring home and put into practice.

Next week, MADRE will travel to Nicaragua for the annual Indigenous Women’s Forum. And this year, we will deliver 200 solar radios to Indigenous women there—thanks to your support. These radios are not just for entertainment. They are a lifeline for women confronting domestic violence and other threats in isolated communities. Wangki Tangni will broadcast radio programming on women's rights and on how to connect to protective services. Thanks to you, women who are abused will learn their rights and find a path to our partners, who offer shelter, medical care, emergency relocation and legal aid.

Thank you for supporting this innovative, life-saving project!

Nov 20, 2015

Women Farmers Plant Seeds of Healthy Communities

The simple force that fuels our work is the power of person-to-person partnerships. And you are at the heart of that. Your support connects you to local women leaders changing their communities for the better.

Rose Cunningham is the director of Wangki Tangni, an Indigenous women's rights group on the North Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua. We recently had the chance to sit down with her for a conversation about Harvesting Hope. We’d like to share a few of those updates with you now - what women have accomplished with your support!

In the Kisalaya community, Harvesting Hope supports a group of women farmers. These women have a shared garden plot where they raise and harvest their crops together. Planting season is already underway for this year! Thanks to you, the women have received most of the seeds that they need for this season. However, Rose told us that there is still a need for bean, cucumber and cabbage seeds.

What's more, your support helps Wangki Tangni and MADRE provide trainings to the women farmers. At their most recent meeting, they learned (1) how to select which seeds to plant and (2) how to make safe and organic fertilizer.

"The women are very excited to use what they learned during this planting season," Rose shared.

The women also have a seed bank, a storage unit that safely stores seeds from one planting season to the next. But it is made out of wood. Every year, parts of it are destroyed and warped by humidity. Now, the women are making annual repairs to their seed bank. Rose and Wangki Tangni have future plans to build a seed bank out of cement to avoid the annual wear and tear.

We look forward to sharing more updates with you soon from this planting season!

Nov 10, 2015

Clara's Story: You are the Key to Change!

Theater classes help children of war to heal.
Theater classes help children of war to heal.

Thousands of young women have been caught in the crosshairs of Colombia’s 50-year war. They’ve been uprooted from their homes, conscripted as child soldiers and targeted with sexual violence.

Clara was only eight years old when she was abandoned by her mother and forced to live on the street. Then, a paramilitary group took over her village. They told her she had a decision to make: work for us, or we’ll leave you to starve.

Thanks to you, MADRE and our local partners Taller de Vida provide trauma counseling and healing art therapy to former girl child soldiers and survivors of sexual violence.

Clara managed to escape after two years in the armed group, and she found her way to Taller de Vida. With your support, Clara attended dance and theater classes, giving her a vital, creative outlet to express and heal from her traumas.

“I still have a long way to go,” she told us. “But I freed myself through theater.”

Today, Clara is a bright, confident young woman committed to helping young girls like herself. She works as a theater instructor with Taller de Vida, teaching children the same exercises she learned to help her heal from her own pain.

Now, she says, “I’m a survivor, and I will keep moving forward.”

Thanks to you, Clara and other young women war survivors are transforming their lives from one of violence to one of peace. Thank you!

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