I don’t know how many times we have to repeat it, but International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month are not dates or occasions to send roses and say “congratulations.” They are dates to push for change and highlight the numbers we all know — endemic violence, femicides, and wage inequality.
While we at BELatina are committed to this mission each and every day of the year, there are those who are still unaware of ways to support the women’s community beyond a meme or a social media post.
Supporting these five organizations is a good way to start.
Pro Mujer was founded in 1990 in El Alto, Bolivia, by two visionary leaders, Lynne Patterson and Carmen Velasco, who believed that given the right opportunities, women could become powerful agents of change.
From a pioneering experiment in microcredit, Pro Mujer has become one of the leading organizations in Latin America committed to women’s empowerment. Our integrated approach offers access to financial, health, and educational services. These services are provided in digital and physical social support spaces to foster community building and equip women with the knowledge and tools to help them reach their full potential.
#ChidasEnLínea is a feminist project that seeks to recognize and document the impact of digital violence on Mexican teenage girls. Through active listening and dialogue with younger women, they are a team that aims to create strategies of resistance and struggle so that Mexican women can inhabit an internet free of macho violence.
The Center for Reproductive Rights (CfRR) was founded in 1992 by Janet Benshoof, a lawyer and women’s rights activist. Through legislative change, Benshoof created the organization to advocate for women’s reproductive rights on a global scale. When CfRR was founded, it became the first international human rights organization specializing in women’s sexual and reproductive health.
The Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that engages in research and dissemination to shape public policy and improve the lives and opportunities of women from diverse backgrounds.
Named a top think tank in the United States, IWPR has shifted the conversation on the gender wage gap, employment and job discrimination, Social Security, welfare reform and access to public benefits, educational access, child care, and many others. Their ongoing Status of Women in the States project and other state-specific research initiatives produce real outcomes for women and families. In recent years, IWPR expanded its Status of Women model globally, working with partners to deliver a series of reports on the Status of Women in the Middle East and North Africa.
The Women’s Refugee Commission was created in 1989 to ensure the rights and needs of women, children, and youth displaced by conflict and crisis are taken into account in humanitarian programs.
Before then, refugee women and children were all but invisible. The Women’s Refugee Commission’s founders—Liv Ullmann, Catherine O’Neill, Susan Forbes Martin, and Susan Alberti—set about to change that. They were the first to sit down with refugee women and ask them what they needed and the solutions they proposed. The refugee women’s feedback formed the basis of the organization’s advocacy.