2021 was—undeniably—a tough year. Battling not one, but two pandemics—COVID-19 and HIV/AIDS—m2m prioritized keeping both our clients and frontline staff safe and healthy while also growing our program in both scale and scope. In the toughest times, we see the best come out in people and that’s exactly what we saw last year.
As we step into 2022, we are reflecting on 20 highlights from 2021. It was no easy feat to keep this list to 20! Here they are (in chronological order):
1. m2m celebrated our 20th anniversary—a special data deep dive revealed that— over the past two decades— m2m has reached over 13.5 million people with life-changing health services, created more than 11,500 jobs, and delivered remarkable health impacts—including helping keep over two million women and children alive.
2. m2m was selected to present a session at SXSW—m2m was honored to be selected to host a session at South by Southwest (SXSW)—the international festival and conference that took place virtually in March 2021. Our session explored how legacies of racism, gender inequality, and colonization have manifested themselves in global health systems and how we can rewrite the narrative. Watch the session here.
3. m2m featured on the “Night of TV” on Red Nose Day UK—we were thrilled to be selected to share the personal story of a Mentor Mother during the “Night of TV”, a four-hour live programmed aired on BBC 1 and culminating in one of the biggest days of philanthropy in the U.K.—Red Nose Day.
4. Longtime partner Gucci celebrated Mother’s Day in the U.S. with a special LA event—Gucci and CHIME FOR CHANGE celebrated their longstanding support for m2m with an exclusive event for m2m supporters on Mother’s Day and generously donated a percentage of sales made in store from the 5th to 9th of May 2021 to m2m.
5. Tanzania makes it Ten—with our re-entry into Tanzania, m2m now operates and delivers direct services in ten sub-Saharan African countries.
6. Transformative gift goes a long way—m2m received a significant donation from MacKenzie Scott and Dan Jewett, which is being put to work to scale and enhance our life-changing work.
7. Sweet Sixteen—in 2021, we marked 16 years of support to m2m from the U.S. Government, thanks to funding from the U.S. President’s Emergency Fund for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), through USAID.
8. m2m shared program learnings at IAS 2021—every two years, an international community dedicated to tackling the HIV/AIDS pandemic gathers to review the latest science and innovations at an event convened by the International AIDS Society (IAS). In 2021, m2m was honored to be selected to present a series of posters at the IAS' 11th Conference on HIV Science.
9. Internally displaced families get support from m2m—m2m has deployed a team of 50 frontline staff to Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado region in response to the growing humanitarian crisis that has seen 700,000 people forced to leave their homes.
10. Instagram followers increased to 30,000—this might seem like a small achievement, but it means the world to us to have so many supporters on Instagram who regularly love our posts and show support for our work.
11. New Board Members joined m2m—in 2021, we were delighted to welcome quite a few new Board Members/Trustees who bring a wide range of new and/or deeper experiences and expertise to m2m.
12. m2m wins 2021 Classy Award for Social Innovation—of the 1,400 nonprofits and social enterprises that participated this year, m2m was selected as one of the 10 most innovative nonprofits.
13. Making Minutes Matter for Mentor Mothers—from September 10-30, m2m ran a unique virtual time-based challenge with participants from around the globe who donated their minutes to m2m to help raise funds.
14. She’s Got the Power to transform a generation—m2m Mentor Mothers have been breaking barriers for the past 20 years, and for our 20th anniversary, we celebrated the incredible female health workers that make up the heart and soul of the organization.
15. Integrating the digital and the personal for Universal Health Coverage—on November 10, 2021, m2m convened an online event to discuss how best to harness the power and potential of digital health in guaranteeing health for all.
16. 2021 commemorations for World AIDS Day—as we marked 40 years since the first cases of HIV/AIDS were identified, we were reminded once again that pandemics know no boundaries: no-one is safe until we are all safe.
17. 20th Anniversary Winter Gala shines a light on Mentor Mothers—m2m hosted our 20th anniversary gala on the 1st of December, to shine a light on and raise funds for our vital work, bringing togethernew and long-timem2m supportersto celebrate20 years of transformational impact and the power of female health workers.
18. COVID-friendly Carols by Candlelight—by popular demand—and with local COVID-19 guidelines allowing—we hosted the fourth edition of our annual Carols by Candlelight concert on December 9, 2021 in London.
19. BBC Radio 4 shares m2m appeal—m2m was selected to present an appeal on the prestigious BBC Radio 4 appeal, a weekly 3-minute program in which a charity appeals for donations to support its work.
20. Healthy women, healthy families, healthy world—m2m ended the year on a high note with our year-end giving campaign—by reinforcing the message that health is a fundamental human right and that everyone should have access to the health services they need, when and where they need them, no matter where they live.