April Update – How Empowering Women Builds Self Esteem and Confidence

Welcome to a new year for the Women United for Change Movement. We’ve been busy beind the scenes with fundraising projects, and are excited to share that as of today we’ve raised $95,000 toward our goal of $100,000, enough money to support 1800 women through PCI’s Women Empowered (WE) training program!

april-2016Big thanks to all of you who’ve supported us to date! It’s inspiring to see what we’ve created in a short time, and definitely shows how much women can accomplish when we unite together to change the world.

Last year we shared several success stories from some of the Guatemalan women we have helped to empower. This month, we want to highlight an inspiring story of Wendy Briseno, a 45-year-old Nicaraguan woman living in the municipality of Villa Nueva with her husband, 21-year-old son, and 14-year-old daughter.

Like many women in her municipality, Wendy, who is taking part in PCI’s Women Empower program, felt challenged by how traditional gender roles were limiting her and her daughter’s ability to carry out many commonplace household activities.

You see, for many generations, these activities have only been done by men. “Often household repairs are assigned to men,” commented Luisa Ramirez, the Community Facilitator who supports the group.

Wendy knew she was capable of taking on more household activities, and decided to use what she had learned in the group to empower herself to take matters into her own hands. For quite some time her house had been in need of painting, and although her husband had purchased the paint he was never able to actually paint the house. Wendy decided she and her daughter would do the painting themselves, even though her husband had told her it wasn’t something she should be doing.

When her husband left for work one Saturday, Wendy, and her daughter mixed the paint and started the job themselves. By the time her husband came home from work, they had two walls completely painted. Her husband couldn’t believe his eyes.

Thanks to Wendy’s participation in PCI’s Women Empowered program, she dared to do something she had never done before. She showed herself, her daughter, and her husband that she was capable of more; she could paint the house as well as he could.

Without PCI and the Women United for Change movement, women like Wendy wouldn’t have access to tools like financial literacy, entrepreneurial skills, and leadership training. They wouldn’t be able to make even the smallest of transformations, which are changing the way Guatemalan women and their families live.

With your help, Wendy has a chance to shape her own destiny, and to feel empowered to be more than she ever thought possible.