Working with women in Wales and Africa - RSA

Working with women in Wales and Africa

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On International Women's Day this year (8 March 19) we hosted a day of learning about women's projects in Wales and Africa, at the Creative Bubble pop-up shop in Swansea. We also launched our RSA funded short film highlighting our work on “global responsibility”.

The charity that I run, Women4resources supports initiatives run and managed by women in Wales and Africa and was set up in 2007. It began with a personal request from a group of entrepreneurial Liberian woman struggling after the civil war to obtain business skills and investment.

Women do not obtain investment at the same levels as men.  This can have a multiplier effect and prevent access to vital networks (the RSA Fellowship is not yet gender-balanced, with a split of 67% male, to 33% female), hence women4resources maintains a commitment to a gendered approach.

We are committed to women and girls as change makers and focus on specific projects in Africa and in Swansea.  Our modest Kenyan micro finance scheme does not charge interest on loans, as research showed this could make “ultra poor”women poorer.  Instead they volunteer in the two partnership libraries which offer safe educational space to vulnerable girls.

In Swansea, GWEN (Grassroots Women Entrepreneur Network) provides mentors and encourages intergenerational and cross cultural partnerships. At present it is attempting to address similar issues to their African sisters “ pad poverty” and environmental pollution.  Women want to have the skills to make their own clothes and sustainable pads using non polluting materials and recycling.

As an all volunteer charity with no regular paid staff we have a committed band of volunteers with half the trustees being ethnic minority other volunteers include a member of the Wales Youth Parliament.  Please do get in touch if you are interested in learning more or volunteering.

Jennifer Twelvetrees FRSA is the Global Responsibility 'goal champion' for RSA Wales/Cymru.  She has many years experience of working on educational and community issues focusing on women’s equality and empowerment.

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