Across all of our initiatives, we’re working with women and girls around the world to break ceilings and allow for full participation in all aspects of society.
Whether it’s through entrepreneurial training in Colombia, improving access to critical health care for young mothers in Rwanda, or supporting women-owned businesses in Haiti, the Clinton Foundation is committed to creating sustainable solutions and inspiring progress for women and girls.
In celebration of International Women’s Day, here are six extraordinary women from around the world who are part of our work – and are working every day to break ceilings.
The Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership’s Chakipi Acceso Network provides women in Peru and Colombia with sales skills and training for packaged foods, personal care items, pharmaceuticals, solar lamps, and clean cookstoves. The Chakipi entrepreneurs then sell these products to others within their communities – providing essential, life-changing goods that are otherwise hard or impossible to access. Over the next few years, the Enterprise Partnership expects to impact 3,000 women in Peru. Two Chakipi entrepreneurs, Holga Yanqui Torres and Alicia Aller, share how their lives have changed since joining the Chakipi program.
- Holga Yanqui Torres, Chakipi Acceso Network Entrepreneur, Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership
"Mothers now have a job so we can move forward in life. With this support we feel satisfied at home, with our kids, and we are able to improve our quality of life." - Alicia Aller, Chakipi Acceso Network Entrepreneur, Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership
With 84 percent of university-educated Haitians living abroad, Haiti has one of the lowest university-enrollment rates in the world at 1 percent. This results in a lack of skilled labor, educated leadership, contributing to Haiti’s social and economic development challenges. The Clinton Foundation works with the Haiti Education & Leadership Program (HELP) to provide merit and need-based scholarships and opportunities for Haitians to attend college locally, helping to create a community of young, educated professionals to help strengthen Haiti’s economy and future. Ismaelle Pierre shares how this HELP scholarship is helping change her future.
"I am very happy and very proud, and so is my family because in the past, women were not given the opportunity to go to University. Now, with the progress that exists, I’m here at University, and I am on the right path toward accomplishing my richest dreams." - Ismaelle Pierre, University Student
In Haiti, we work with our partners to promote sustainable economic development and job creation, with a focus on women-led businesses. Caribbean Crafts owner Magalie Dresse helped revive Haitian artisan communities and is providing local jobs to Haitians. The Clinton Foundation has supported Caribbean Craft’s continued growth, and Caribbean Craft is selling their beautiful handcrafted artisan work on the international market to companies including Anthropologie, West Elm, Home Goods and Urban Zen.
"We believe that families are stronger when women are also earning a living. Opportunities are given a lot more to men so we want to give a chance to as many women as we can." - Magalie Dresse, Owner, Caribbean Craft
Because almost 60 percent of HIV-positive people in sub-Saharan Africa are women, the Clinton Health Access Initiative is working to improve maternal health programs and provide support systems for women who are pregnant and have been diagnosed with HIV. At health clinics and rural health posts, the Clinton Health Access Initiative provides necessary family support for HIV-positive women who are pregnant by assigning families an Expert Clinician – a community member who has been HIV-positive for many years and can serve as a support system for newly diagnosed individuals. Sekina is one Expert Clinician who has served as a support system to many families in her community, and continues to help women stay positive.
"I’m an expert client...I am helping the other people who have tested positive to living a long life and a positive life…we help the pregnant women with the continuance with counseling. I’ve decided to do this work because I want to help more people stay positive, like me". - Sekina, Expert Clinician, Clinton Health Access Initiative
Through our Clinton Development Initiative’s Anchor Farm Project, we provide access to training, fertilizer, and seeds to more than 11,000 women in Malawi. The Anchor Farm Project is made up of farmer clubs, which work together in groups to support their efforts and help to expand the success of the project within their communities. In Malawi, there are many all-female farmer clubs, which often serve as greater support system within the community. Gertrude Kaipa is part of the Sakhuta Club and shares how her club has become a strong network of women who support, care, and educate one another.
"One of the reasons why our group is always strong is that when a member has a financial problem at home, such as failure to pay school fees for her children, the group helps by lending her money from the group fund and she pays back gradually. This builds our solidarity and sense of belonging … In this group, we share a lot of skills and we learn every day. The skills include cookery, knitting, self and home management, agronomy. As a result of this learning, we become better managers of our lives and our families and we are in control." - Gertrude Kaipa, Farmers Club Member, Anchor Farm Project