Tami with WomensTrust Loan Client
THE IMPACT & ITS RIPPLES
by Tami Stillwell
Volunteering for WomensTrust truly made an impact on my life. I never thought I’d travel to a far off country and be so profoundly moved and inspired. Meeting such strong-willed, determined women and girls left me with a sense of involvement in an organization that is creating significant change. My firsthand experience in Pokuase, Ghana was a once in a lifetime opportunity!
Flying 10.5 hours and driving an hour to the lodge increased my enthusiasm for detailing the sights and sounds of Ghana via my computer. As a graphic designer and social media enthusiast, I offered my services and tweeted my entire trip--both increasing and informing WomensTrust’s social network following (I hope you will follow us on Twitter and Facebook!) One of the first people I met was Peggy Saanuo. A member of WomensTrust’s after-school enrichment class, Peggy received a full scholarship to continue her high school education in the United States. Shy in demeanor, I could tell that she was excited to go.
Each staff member had a unique way of providing a positive working atmosphere. Eric greeted me with a smile; Francis was hilarious; Solomon was sharp, and Gertie was the “woman holding it down.” I tagged along with interns Ryan and Stella and visited some of WomensTrust clients at their homes. After meeting the staff, I knew Pokuase was lucky to have a dedicated local team willing to go the extra mile.
I also spent time with the educational side of WomensTrust. The after-school computer class provided a further opportunity for girls to expand their knowledge. I was impressed by how quickly these girls learned the ins-and-outs of computers. They were so thankful to have this class. The school enrichment class I sat in on was equally impressive. Girls attend these classes every weekend to receive extra academic help. Every night I was eager to inform the social media world of whom I’d met and what I’d learned.
Returning home, a more refreshed and rejuvenated person, I was moved by the strong and independent women and girls I’d met. Helping just one person can go a long way. One WomensTrust loan helps a woman’s business improve. One scholarship helps a girl succeed in education. I returned with a big question: what more can I do to help?
I encourage you to give generously. I have seen for myself the impact WomensTrust is having in Pokuase’s growth as a community, and I wish the organization further success.