Press Releases

Highlights of MADRE Accomplishments

Posted on: Friday, October 28, 2011



2011: A Year of Transformations

The moments that change lives don’t come out of thin air. Great popular change is the result of years of organizing, education and activism—the very work that MADRE does with women worldwide, thanks to you.

You can be proud of giving so many women the means to tackle poverty, disaster, violence and discrimination. We’ve done it with impact that defies our size. And we couldn’t have done it without you.

As a MADRE supporter, you’re not only part of a women’s human rights organization—you’re a part of history. Here are some of the things you helped us achieve in 2011.

You Helped Combat Rape in Haiti

c. MADREWhen an epidemic of rape tore through post-earthquake tent cities in Haiti this year, you helped ease women’s pain. With your support, we rebuilt a women’s center destroyed by the earthquake. Now, every day it’s filled with women receiving medical and legal aid, counseling and other services to help them recover from the trauma of rape.

And, you helped MADRE win a groundbreaking international legal ruling demanding that governments protect and empower our sisters in Haiti. The ruling calls for security patrols and lighting in the camps, for medical care for rape survivors, and for rapists to be brought to justice.

Your commitment gave us the power to move this case forward, and the results are already being felt. Our sister organization, KOFAVIV, was recently invited by the Haitian government to give input on new legislation to address and prevent violence against women! Together, we’re moving mountains. Thank you.

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You Brought Abused Women to Safety in Afghanistan

Afghanistan is the most dangerous place on earth to be a woman. Women are denied education, healthcare, employment and protection from domestic abuse. Running away from abuse is a crime punishable by death. Still, many risk their lives to escape with the support of MADRE’s Afghan Women’s Survival Fund.

This year, we’ve accomplished so much with your support. Every woman and girl who escaped violence through the network of shelters thanks you. Afghan women provided the courage, but you helped provide the medical care, food, clothing, housing and transportation that saved lives. Thank you.

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You Helped Iraqi Women Escape Violence and Oppression

(c) OWFIThe 2003 US invasion of Iraq empowered Islamist extremists, resulting in a sharp rise in violence against women. Women who mobilize to make political demands, women who dare to hold down a job, women who defy traditional rules—all have been targeted with violence and even “honor killings.”

But women refuse to back down. With MADRE’s support, our Iraqi sisters have organized and led demonstrations demanding democracy and women’s rights in the cities’ main squares. These are breathtaking moments in history, and your support is their backbone.

The MADRE-supported Underground Railroad for Women has given refuge to over 300 women and girls since it began, and MADRE-supported radio and newspapers inform women of their rights and tell them where they can turn for help.

Thank you for standing with us as we help women who have the courage to hope because they have your friendship.

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You Brought Safe Births to Women in Palestine

In the West Bank, barricades, demolished roads and military checkpoints often prevent pregnant women from reaching safe birthing facilities.

In support of Palestinian mothers, our Midwives for Peace initiative continues to join Israeli and Palestinian midwives in a humanitarian effort to deliver babies in safety. This year, MADRE was able to bring more than two dozen Palestinian and Israeli midwives together to share knowledge, skills and friendship. This program has given so many women the safe, joyful experience of childbirth that every woman should have. Thanks to you!

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You Fought Femicide in Guatemala

(c) MADREAt least 5,000 women and girls have been raped and killed in the past decade while the Guatemalan government and police look the other way.

Our partners, who live on the frontlines of this horror, requested that a MADRE delegation come to Guatemala to collect evidence and testimonies. They want to take their case all the way to the United Nations. Thanks to you, they’ll be able to do just that through MADRE’s dedicated legal team. Thank you!

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You Protected Girls from Mutilation and Forced Marriage in Kenya

In today’s drought, families feel forced to marry off daughters as young as 8 years old for a dowry in money or animals. These child brides often endure years of marital rape and a greatly elevated risk of death during childbirth. The agonizing ritual of female genital mutilation, considered a prerequisite to marriage, often causes horrendous, life-long medical complications.

MADRE is supporting six shelters that also educate hundreds of girls escaping genital mutilation and forced marriage. Schooling enables them to earn incomes, offering an alternative to forced marriage as a survival strategy.

Meanwhile, under-supplied refugee camps in northeast Kenya are crowded with people escaping famine in Somalia. Families arrive traumatized and near death, only to be turned away from overcrowded camps.

Your gifts are enabling MADRE to bring emergency aid to these families. With Womankind Kenya, MADRE’s newest sister organization, and through your support, we’ve been able to provide nearly 2,700 families with emergency water, maize, beans and cooking oils.

Thank you! We could not respond as immediately and effectively as we do if we did not have your support—your kindness is magnificent!

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You Brought Clean, Safe Water to Nicaragua

(c) MADREOn the coast of Nicaragua, children are dying needlessly from waterborne diseases. The culprit is contaminated water, and the problem is getting worse as climate change brings more floods that carry deadly germs into the water supply. You’ve helped save lives in these communities.

You and other MADRE members enabled our partners to purify water supplies, clean wells and install water pumps. The incidence of cholera, typhoid and dysentery has plummeted. Thank you!

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Challenges for 2012

We’ve accomplished so much together in 2011. Just imagine what we could do in 2012 if we continue this momentum—accelerated by your continued generosity. Following are a few of the key programs and challenges we intend to meet with your support in the months ahead.

Help Meet Basic Needs: Provide Shoes for Women

As a MADRE supporter, you understand that the women we work with worldwide cannot focus on social change unless their basic survival needs are met. In the displacement camps of Haiti, even small cuts from walking on rubble-strewn streets put women and girls at risk of life-threatening infections from dirty water and soil. That’s why we launched Shoes for Haiti, delivering over 1,000 shoes to women and girls, allowing them to safely walk to a MADRE-supported women’s center to access the services they urgently needed.

In 2012, we will build on this success and bring this campaign to Nicaragua and other communities in Latin America where women face similar threats. We’ll need your help.

Sustain Long-Term Partnerships: Deliver Life-Saving Medical Care

MADRE also partners with local women’s organizations to create long-term solutions to the crises women face. That’s why long after the recent famine in the Horn of Africa disappears from the headlines, MADRE will continue our work with Womankind Kenya to support mobile clinics for refugees in communities of northeastern Kenya.

The clinics will provide crucial medical care to those most affected by the famine. Your support will make a difference.

Create Alternatives: Grow Food for Those in Need

By joining forces with each other and with you, our sisters at the Women Farmers Union in Sudan have been able to feed their families and build stronger communities. As their harvests have grown, so have their dreams. In 2012, they plan to set aside a small plot of land and use it to provide locally grown and organic food for hungry, struggling families in Sudan. Your continued support will be critical to their success.

Multiply Our Impact: Stand Up to Domestic Violence

You want your donation to go as far as it can—and so do we. So we must build solutions that address multiple problems at once. In 2012, MADRE will launch Sister Salons for Guatemala, a project that combines training in job skills with training in domestic violence counseling for women in a neglected neighborhood outside Guatemala City.

Not only will women gain essential income-generating opportunities, the salon—oftentimes the only social space where a woman facing domestic violence can go without her abuser—will serve as a refuge for women who seek counseling and friendship. MADRE member gifts will make a direct impact here.

Stay Strong in the Months Ahead

Your support is key to continuing our vital programs even as we forge ahead with urgently needed new efforts. With your help, we will:

• Replenish our emergency response fund so we can continue to be fast and effective when unexpected disaster strikes, as we were in Haiti with the earthquake and cholera epidemic, and in Kenya with the drought and famine.

• Continue our highly successful efforts to bring clean water to communities in need, like those in Gaza, Kenya and Nicaragua.

• Stand firm in our fight to protect the lives of women under siege as we have in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guatemala.

• Redouble our resources to strengthen our activist sisters around the world who are standing up for women's human rights and demanding the attention and protection of the international community.

Nothing is more important than your participation in the work we do. Please recommit yourself to the struggle for women’s human rights. And remember, your donation will be doubled in value if you give before December 31, 2011. Thank you.


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Kat Noel, Website & Media Coordinator
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