Girls in the Classroom
As we've said from the outset, Women Work Together is all about locally-directed, sustainable change and, to use an old cliché, we are busting-our-buttons proud of ADIMTU, our in-country partners in San Pedro Sacatepéquez.
The Guatemalan team has become highly capable and resourceful in its own right. In this seven-year journey, the Girls Leadership Institute that WWT helped ADIMTU design, implement and grow has captured support from local leaders, achieved national recognition and certification, and secured buy-in from the Guatemalan Ministry of Education. ADIMTU is attracting other sustainability partners, too. And so WWT is preparing to hand over program development and expansion to ADIMTU in 2016.
Early on, WWT underwrote 100% of ADIMTU's program costs. This year, with other partners at the table, our share dropped to 75% and, in 2016, we will contribute only 50% of their budget as we step aside operationally, having met our goal to launch ADIMTU programmatically and financially from under our wing.
In order to meet our commitment and complete this transfer we must raise $55,000 by the end of this year. We're chipping away at this ambitious goal and here's where we stand now:
* Our Patio, Paella and Jazz summer fundraiser raised $18,000!
* That leaves $37,000 to be raised by the end of 2015.
* We're counting on you to include WWT in your 2015 donations.
* Assuming we make our goal, no more asks from us, ever, after this year!
More Good News
* 150 girls are completing our 3-year Girls Leadership Institute this year. During 2015 WWT worked with nearly 1,000 girls plus their mothers, families, teachers and other community leaders who all play essential roles in these programs.
* Several WWT Board members and friends are going to San Pedro Sacatepéquez this fall to celebrate the girls' success and publically acknowledge ADIMTU's accomplishments across the municipality.
* Wendy Baring-Gould, WWT's program director, will go to Guatemala next spring to assist with the initial pilot of a Boys Leadership Institute and a teacher training program. The goal of the boys' program is to advance gender equity and community stability while improving the capacity of boys and girls to partner as men and women to solve local problems and lift their communities out of poverty together. WWT is one of the first NGOs to recognize the importance of broadening our reach beyond girls in order to successfully effect social change in the long haul. And the teacher training is in preparation for taking all the programs to scale.
Invest in Change Now
Make this your year to invest in community-driven change. Help us reach our goal to complete a successful turnover to our Guatemalan partners. Below is a first hand account of the impact we are having.
Changing Attitudes and Beliefs
María Alejandra Ramos, Change Agent
I want to present a personal and professional commentary about Sacuchúm, a very macho community where ADIMTU has been working for about five years. At the beginning, and for some time, the community leaders and teachers were resistant to the idea of providing the workshops to the women and girls of their community, creating obstacles or excuses so that the girls wouldn't attend or supervising and listening to the information being transmitted about gender, leadership, education, etc. Today, five years later, and in the absence of my visiting this community for two years because of my having responsibility for other schools, I've come to realize that ADIMTU is increasingly engaged in the ideals of the girls and what is even better is that the girls are more awake and aware about the changes that they want for their lives and their community, that they are more motivated and they voice their opinions without bowing their heads.
It also surprised me that the teachers, after posing some resistance, now are more committed to the projects. They help out with the delivery and pickup of books for the girls' reading, they make space available for us to work with the girls and they are flexible in providing time and a classroom specifically for ADIMTU to give our workshops. In My Little Sister, the teacher visits consistently with the teachers of the little girls in order to know about their progress. I am sure that the changes in the attitudes of the teachers and community leaders derive from the results observed in the teen girls.
Please dig deep and make a stretch donation to Women Work Together in 2015.