Row New York

Row New York

2009 Self-Image Grantees

Spring 2009

Birth Education Beyond the Ordinary (BEBO)

Serving the area of Westchester County, New York, BEBO seeks to empower women and their families to play an active role in the birth of their children by providing affordable and comprehensive childbirth education and support. BEBO classes are taught by certified childbirth educators in English or Spanish to expectant parents in any stage of pregnancy. The topics taught in BEBO classes include pregnancy nutrition, childbirth choices, labor support, pain relief options, postpartum preparation, breastfeeding basics and newborn care.

BEBO was awarded a $10,000 grant to help it expand its services to reach more women and families. The Self-Image Grant will also help BEBO launch its labor-support doula program. A doula is a trained professional who provides physical, emotional and informed choice support during the childbirth process.

Bright Endeavors

Bright Endeavors strives to break the cycle of poverty experienced by the homeless, inner-city, and at-risk young women of Chicago between the ages of sixteen and twenty-five, by helping these young women gain the necessary skills to become self-sufficient, successful adults. It assists young women in making positive life changes that lead to a strong sense of self, achievement, independence and direction. Through its social enterprise, Dreambean Candles, a 100 percent natural care line that utilizes recycled glass products and sustainable wax, Bright Endeavors is able to offer transitional employment to these young women. Participants also receive guidance and training in five critical areas of their life, which include education, career, family, finances and housing.

Bright Endeavors was awarded a $25,000 grant in support of its Employment and Personal Achievement for Young Women in Chicago program.

Girls For A Change (GFC)

Founded in San Jose, California, GFC has since become a national organization, expanding its programs to areas such as San Francisco, California; Phoenix, Arizona; and Richmond, Virginia. GFC aims to empower teenage girls to create social change, focusing its efforts on girls who live in low income communities. GFC, through its Change Your World Trainings, Girl Action Teams, Volunteer Coaches and Girl Action Network, provides the tools, partnerships, and support for these girls to discover their voices and gain the ability to tackle the issues they face in their communities.

GFC was awarded $10,000 in support of its expansion to meet national and international demand for GFC programming.

Lotus Outreach International

Lotus Outreach International is dedicated to improving the lives of those in marginalized communities and isolated regions through education, advocacy and health care. Through the help of local partners, Lotus Outreach International is able to develop grassroots projects that target mostly impoverished, exploited and at-risk women and children in the developing world.

Lotus Outreach International was awarded $10,000 to expand its Non-Formal Education (NFE) program in Cambodia to enable it to go from serving forty-five students to one hundred. The NFE program provides urban sex workers in Cambodia vocational and life skills training which give them the skills to find opportunities outside of the sex trade. Its courses cover everything from cooking, handicrafts, husbandry and sewing; to basic literacy and mathematics; to starting a small business. In addition, the NFE program provides holistic life skills education in areas such as human rights, teamwork and conflict resolution, basic nutrition, reproductive health, personal finance and preventative health care, ensuring graduates are equipped to raise healthy and happy families.

Row New York

Row New York strives to empower girls and young women to achieve excellence in all facets of their lives by combining competitive rowing with individualized tutoring, academic goal setting and college application assistance. The support given by the program, along with the joy of rowing, provides the girls with an uplifting environment where they feel safe to learn, to lead and to challenge themselves as they reach toward their full potential. Since its inception in 2002, Row New York has grown from serving fifteen participants to over three hundred girls, primarily from low-income, minority neighborhoods, with all of its graduates going on to college, many on scholarships. The Row New York team has also earned numerous medals in races against teams from elite private schools.

Row New York was awarded a $10,000 grant to implement enhancements in its program that offer a higher level of engagement and support to each participant from their target population, girls from low-performing public high schools in Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx.

Women's Equity in Access to Care and Treatment (WE-ACTx)

WE-ACTx was created by an international community of frontline AIDS physicians, researchers and activists in response to the lack of treatment received by the estimated 250,000 rape survivors of the Rwandan genocide. Based in the U.S., WE-ACTx works in close collaboration with twenty-four local, partner organizations, and Rwandan public health agencies, and has since provided health care services to over five thousand patients. In addition to clinical treatments, WE-ACTx endeavors to address gender-based violence, HIV and poverty through advocacy.

WE-ACTx was awarded $26,292, the full cost of its Rwandan Girls - A Better World Is Possible program, which is based on its community-driven model to providing comprehensive, holistic health care. Specifically, the grant will provide ongoing support for vulnerable young women who have either experienced sexual abuse within their families and communities; engaged in transactional sex; were abused as domestic workers; or are young mothers.

YMCA of Greater Seattle, Metrocenter YMCA Branch

The YMCA of Greater Seattle has been working for more that 130 years to build a community where everyone, especially the young, is encouraged to develop to the fullest potential in spirit, mind and body. Located in downtown Seattle, the Metrocenter YMCA branch provides education, employment support and leadership and service programs for the youth.

The Metrocenter YMCA of Greater Seattle branch was awarded $10,000 to expand its Patsy Collins Adventure in Leadership program (PCAL) with the hope of reaching new audiences of girls. Since 1997, PCAL has empowered girls with the self-confidence to lead, the generosity of spirit to give back to their communities and the awareness to live healthy and balanced lives.