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Get Involved in Giving GROWTH a Chance

By Sonya Perez-Lauterbach

About the GROWTH Act

Global Resources and Opportunities for Women to Thrive (GROWTH) Act (S.1425) is an innovative bill that is currently being discussed in Congress. It will give greater economic opportunities to women and families living in poverty. This bill was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Durbin, Richard (IL) on July 9, 2009. It was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations. The GROWTH Act was put together after two years of study and the technical advice of Opportunity’s own Senior Vice President, Policy, Susy Cheston. It is supported by an amalgamation of almost 60 organizations which have formally endorsed the bill. Click here for recent news and blog coverage.

How the GROWTH Act helps Women Living in Poverty

Opportunity International and the GROWTH Act share the same vision for helping women around the world pull themselves out of repressing poverty. Microfinance services, like those offered by Opportunity, provide women with the training and modest start-up loans they need to grow their businesses and ultimately escape the cycle of poverty.

Julie is a Business Development Service Manager for Opportunity International, working at Taytay Sa Kauswajan, Inc. (TSKI), an organization that provides microfinance to women in the Philippines. With Julie’s help, one woman, Nida, completed training in meat processing which has helped her in marketing her sausages to local businesses. Nida is able to use the profit she makes to fund her children’s education and to pay for her family’s medicine.

Studies have shown that when women like Nida earn extra income, they invest it in the nutrition, education, and healthcare of their children. You can be a part of this transformation of lives by coming alongside Opportunity International in support of the GROWTH Act. If enacted, the GROWTH Act will lift barriers to economic opportunities for women by helping women gain access to credit to start their own businesses, get better jobs, improve their working conditions, and have the right to own property.

How YOU Can Help

Call your Senators directly and ask them to co-sponsor the GROWTH Act (S.1425). Dial the Capitol switchboard at 202.224.3121 and ask to be connected to your Senators’ offices.

When a Senate office staffer answers the phone say, “As a constituent of Senator _____, I am asking him/her to invest in ending world poverty by co-sponsoring the Global Resources and Opportunities for Women to Thrive, or GROWTH, Act (S. 1425).” Find your Senator!

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