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$1.2 Million Raised, 8,000 Women Empowered in One Woman Holiday Challenge

By Opportunity International

A big thank you to the hundreds of amazing people who joined Opportunity International’s One Woman Holiday Challenge. At the end of 2012, we contributed more than $1.2 million in just 45 days to empower women in poverty! Together, we enabled over 8,000 women to grow businesses, increase their incomes, and have safe places to save, helping them to provide a better future for their families.

What does one gift mean to one woman?

Clean Water through Community Leadership

Client Ana Celia Acuña, NicaraguaFor Ana Celia Acuña, a gift enabled her to bring clean drinking water to her Nicaraguan community. Ana and her neighbors had been without drinking water for many years because of an earthquake, so she set out to build an aqueduct. When investing in the project, Opportunity requested that this respected Trust Group member be invited to join the all-male La Laguna Community Cooperative. She’s their first-ever woman board member, and the bookkeeper and cashier for the water project. She recruited other women to join the board and now there are equal numbers of women and men solving the community’s critical issues. Opportunity’s investment in the project and its faith in Ana helped make her community safer and healthier.

An Opportunity for a Marginalized Community

Client Deepa, from a marginalized gypsy community in Chennai, India.For Deepa, one gift began her transformation into a community leader. Before she joined Opportunity, she earned less than $2 a day collecting and selling waste paper in Chennai, India, and didn’t have a voice as a member of a marginalized gypsy community. With her loan from Opportunity, she bought materials to create necklaces that she sold at the local market for a good price. The gypsy women in Deepa’s community noticed her success and asked her for her help. She taught them how to make the beautiful necklaces and gave them advice, and the women became Opportunity clients too. Now every Friday, the entire community gathers at the market to sell their products, working as a team.

A Quality Education for the Next Generation

Client and educator Comfort Appiah in Accra,Ghana.For Comfort Appiah, one gift helped her bring education to the children of her neighborhood in Accra, Ghana. Fifteen years ago, Comfort saw the local children loitering and not going to school. She started Ahobrase Academy out of her home to give them a chance to learn. In 2009, she applied for a school proprietor loan from Opportunity Ghana to move to a new location. Today, Ahobrase serves more than 700 students from preschool to junior high who might not have had a chance for an education, and provides much-needed employment to 38 staff members from the community. Comfort is changing hundreds of people’s futures and she dreams of expanding her school to give back even more.

To those who joined the One Woman Holiday Challenge, thank you for helping us empower women like Ana, Deepa and Comfort. Because of you, women like them are impacting their communities and changing the future for their families.

This is a great achievement but there are still millions more women around the world who need an opportunity to improve their lives. If you’d like to invest in one woman’s future, it’s not too late to make a contribution » Thank you!

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