Global Grassroots

Global Grassroots is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our mission is to catalyze women and girls as leaders of conscious social change in their communities. Global Grassroots' work is guided by four core values that form our theory of change: 1. Deepening personal consciousness and contributing towards the common good are both essential to social change. 2. One of the most effective levers of social change is a woman with the capability, resources, power, courage and inner commitment to initiate positive change for herself and others. 3. Sustaining and accelerating conscious social change requires investment in supporting civil society architecture. 4. Mind-body trauma healing plu...
Jun 21, 2016

Sewing and knitting lead to happier homes

Marie-Claire is all smiles now!
Marie-Claire is all smiles now!

Team Unite launched their venture in 2013 in a village outside of Kigali, Rwanda. Their work consists of three parts: teaching community members skills that can create income, providing opportunities for people (particularly women) to come together in groups to discuss their lives, and educating their community about women's rights.

First the team purchased sewing and knitting machines and taught groups of women - and men - how to use them. They taught jewelry- and basket-making, too, so community members now have a variety of ways to earn income. Everyone who produces goods gives 10% of the sale back to the venture, keeping 90% for themselves; what is returned to the team is re-invested in the venture.

Men and women work in separate groups. Unite members will then talk to the group about women's rights, domestic violence, the importance of education, etc. while their captive audience works on producing their crafts. In these groups, men and women are also more likely to engage in open conversations about their lives and it is often through these conversations that the team learns of a marriage in trouble or a woman being abused by her husband. The team can then intervene.

Marie-Claire has been married for five years and has two small sons. Despite her husband's salary, her own salary as a primary school teacher, and the income from food they grow to sell, Marie-Claire said they never had any money. Her husband would take it all and spend it on alcohol and other women. As a result, the couple was always in conflict and she was ready to leave with the children who were frequently distressed. As a last resort, Marie-Claire confided in one of Unite's leaders. A small contingent of team members then made weekly visits to Marie-Claire's home to help the couple resolve their issues. Over time, Marie-Claire's husband grew to understand the impact his behavior was having on his wife and children and he knew that it was up to him to change.

Marie-Claire says that now they are 'doing well' and her children no longer experience turmoil at home. Her husband brings his salary home each week and together they decide how they will use their income. He is also spending more time with their children. Marie-Claire smiled and said, "I am very happy."

So far, Unite's work has reached 420 people, including 71 men and 32 youth, and local leaders now refer troubled couples to the team for help.

Your support of Global Grassroots' Academy for Conscious Change makes it possible for teams such as Unite to implement their own sustainable solutions to social issues impacting people in their community, especially women and girls. Thank you!

A young man trained to sew by Unite
A young man trained to sew by Unite
Women trained by Team Unite
Women trained by Team Unite

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Jun 20, 2016

Project Closing: RESONATE'S New Giving Platform

In October of 2015 Resonate was awarded nonprofit status by the IRS, a designation that recognizes the work we have done to date, and marks a turning point in our growth as an organization. We have been working hard to build the programmatic infrastructure necessary to take our program to the next level and reach even more women and girls with our transformational leadership training.

This has been possible thanks to support from Global Grassroots as our fiscal sponsor, and we are closing our Global Giving project to take full ownership of our work moving forward. Through our four program areas – Storytelling for Leadership, Action Leadership, Professional Development, and Training of Facilitators – we have reached more than 1,000 participants. 

One of those 1,000 participants, Immaculee, told us how her life had changed just a month after our training. During an interview she said,

“I can’t find a way to describe how much your training has changed my life. I have been experiencing violence in my marriage and I failed to stand up for my rights for many years. I am married and have eight children…my husband refused to take responsibilities of sending them to school and I kept quiet...After your training, the only child who managed to study up to primary six, he got high enough marks to continue with his education and my husband refused to help pay school fees. Thanks to your training, for the first time, I talked to our cell leader. They invited my husband for a meeting and requested him to get the money ($30USD) and send our child to school. I am happy that I advocated for my son and I wish I could have done the same for my other children.” 

Immaculee’s self-confidence and willingness to stand up for herself will have a lasting impact on her and her children. Even though we are closing our GlobalGiving page, you can continue to have an impact on Immaculee and thousands of others like her by visiting our website: http://resonateworkshops.org

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Apr 13, 2016

Helping Street Children Find Their Way

Every year we are impressed with the young women who participate in our Young Women's Academy for Conscious Change - and this year is no different. Our young women in Uganda are proving that they are forces to be reckoned with. Just two weeks ago, they reconvened for their mid-term sessions where they shared with one another and with Global Grassroots’ staff the challenges they have faced implementing their ventures and the successes they have experienced in that same process. Naggayi, from the village of Kibuli in Kampala shared her insights about the beneficiaries of her venture: street children.

Naggayi is seeking to reduce the number of street children in Kampala, particularly those who are from the refugee camps in the area. She believes that many children there are just not able to have their basic needs met, especially those with no family to care for them. They then think that they will be able to support themselves through begging on the streets of the city, which Naggayi knows only puts them at great risk.

Naggayi’s goal is teach the children skills to help them support themselves and for the children she teaches to then teach others. She is also sharing with them the inherent dangers of street life so they realize that turning to the street is not a solution to any problem they may have.

This young change agent said that the community doesn't have time for street children because "they tend to think of them as crime creaters, drug abusers, etc. The interesting thing is that [these street children] are cooperative and ready to give to those who need them. And they are hard-working."

Naggayi said that she believs that it is how you approach people often determines how they in turn respond to you.

Well said, Naggayi; we couldn't agree more!

 
   

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