eGirl Power Awards Awake Security CEO’s Gender Equality Activism

eGirl Power has chosen to honor Rahul Kashyap, CEO of Awake Security, at the PIFA Awards Masquerade Virtual Gala for his activism in making STEM jobs more accessible to young girls.

Rahul Kashyap, CEO of Awake Security
Rahul Kashyap, CEO of Awake Security, will be honored by eGirl Power at the PIFA Awards Masquerade Virtual Gala. (Image credit: Fortune)

eGirl Power is hosting the “PIFA Awards Masquerade Virtual Gala” in February 2021 to honor Rahul Kashyap, CEO of Awake Security and launch their 501c3 nonprofit organization’s newest programs that align and work towards advancing the United Nations (UN) 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. These programs include: Leadership & Mentorship, Cybersecurity & STEM, and Mi9 Agenda 2030, The Rise of Ms. Direction. All of eGirl Power’s program goals aim to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education opportunities for all, and to achieve gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls.

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Driving Opportunity for Women and Girls in the COVID World

Editor’s Note: The following essay is by  Brenda Darden Wilkerson, CEO of AnitaB.org, a leading organization and grantmaker for women in technology.

2020 has had no shortage of challenges. The many losses of COVID-19 compounded with the painful yet necessary ripple effects of the rising social justice movement have called into question how we personally and professionally work.

Brenda Darden Wilkerson, CEO of AnitaB.org, shares her expertise on how to employ and empower more women in the COVID world. (Image credit: AnitaB.org)

While the events of 2020 have impacted everyone, women – and especially women of color – face the greatest burden. With over 11 million jobs disappearing from February to May of this year, and with lifestyle impact of gender pay parity so profound, the “she-cession” is upon us. 

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Four Ways Ellevate Squads Showed Me the Future is Female

Editor’s Note: The following personal essay is a reflection on one individual’s participation in the EllevateHER Forward Fellowship program. This is not a program endorsement or a sales post. Philanthropy Women was not compensated for this article.

Image Credit: Ellevate

This fall, I had the good fortune to be selected as an EllevateHER Forward Fellow, one of a group of women selected to participate in Ellevate‘s Fall 2020 cohort for women’s leadership and career growth programming. As part of the Fellowship, I participated in the Ellevate Squads program, which redefines traditional “networking” groups by pairing women all over the country with a consistent “Squad” for twelve weeks.

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Grameen America Starts New Loan Fund for Low-Income Women

Microfinance nonprofit organization Grameen America recently announced a new loan fund to provide approximately $200 million of cumulative loans to low-income minority women business owners. These loans are especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has put extreme pressure on small business owners as they seek to pull themselves and their families out of poverty.

grameen america
Andrea Jung, Grameen America CEO (Image credit: Grameen America)

GRAMEEN AMERICA LAUNCHES IMPACT INVESTING FUND TO SUPPORT MINORITY WOMEN IMPACTED BY THE PANDEMIC

Funds Will Provide Nearly $200 Million of Cumulative Loans to Women Entrepreneurs over Five Years

New York, NY, December 10, 2020 — National microfinance nonprofit organization Grameen America today announced the launch of its $17.5 million Social Business Fund II (“SBF II” or “the Fund”), a social impact investment opportunity that will provide nearly $200 million of cumulative loan capital low-income minority business owners over its five year life.

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100 Black Business Women Selected for $25 K from American Express

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today, American Express (NYSE: AXP) revealed the 100 Black women entrepreneurs selected for its “100 for 100” program, which will provide each with grants of $25,000 and 100 days of business resources, including business education, mentorship, marketing, virtual networking, WorkSpaces by Hilton hotel reservation credits and more.

100 black-women-owned businesses receive $25,000 each to grow their impact. (Image credit: American Express)

American Express created this program in partnership with IFundWomen of Color, the leading platform for women of color to raise capital, to support Black women entrepreneurs as they work to jump start and grow their business ventures. The initiative is part of American Express’ recently announced $1 billion action plan to enhance diverse representation and promote equal opportunities for its colleagues, customers and communities.

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When Women’s Leadership Has Market Value, the World Changes

It seems, in the feminist philanthropy community, everyone is waiting for that tipping point to come, when women’s leadership finally establishes its value to the world. Covid, it seems, is helping to accelerate our awareness of the added value of women’s leadership. By showing that countries led by women having strikingly better COVID survival and containment rates, we should finally be at that point where you could practically pour the product of women’s leadership into a bottle and sell it on the open market.

And now a few words from our Editor in Chief, Kiersten Marek.

Well, think again. I have been on my own quest to establish the value of women’s leadership, particularly women’s leadership in philanthropy, over the past four years. I went in with the theory that feminist strategies are more powerful strategies, and once people get to know more about them, lots of folks would flock to our website and build up our subscriber base to the point where, eventually, it might even turn into a for-profit market product. Though fiscally sponsored by the Women’s Funding Network, our budget and strategy is built around the idea that only a small portion of our funding should come from grants, and that as our subscriber base grows, eventually, we could become attractive to a regular small business publication or larger progressive media platform.

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Ensuring “Post-Traumatic Growth” for Women in The COVID Economy

Editor’s Note: The following dialogue is between Dr. Diandra J. Prescod, associate professor and program coordinator of counselor education at the University of Connecticut, and Erin Milroy, president of Kuder, Inc., an award-winning career guidance solutions provider. Their exchange offers perspectives on how to prepare and support American workers, particularly women, as we deal with COVID and its economic and social impacts.

With millions displaced due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, America’s workforce, and American families from all walks of life, have been hit hard.

Dr. Diandra J. Prescod, associate professor and program coordinator of counselor education at the University of Connecticut. (Image Credit: Diandra J. Prescod)

Many women and men have been laid off or furloughed by their employers and have been forced to seek employment elsewhere, re-entering what is one of the most difficult climates since the Great Depression. Other households continue to struggle to find daily work-life balance, a dilemma made worse for those who, amidst social distancing measures to avoid infection, have been faced with unprecedented challenges, such as homeschooling their children during their workdays.

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Kamala Harris: “We’re Gonna Get It Done.”

“We’re gonna get it done.” These were some of the first words spoken by Vice Presidential Candidate Kamala Harris in her phenomenal half-hour interview with Errin Haines, Editor-at-Large for the 19th, during the 19th Represents Summit on Friday. Harris’s plans to “get it done” refer to the upcoming Presidential election, and her goal to join Joe Biden in leading the U.S. out of one of its worst crisis periods in history.

Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris spoke with Errin Haines of The 19th on Friday, August 14th, giving details of her experience becoming the first woman of color nominated to the U.S. Presidential ticket. (Image Credit: The 19th video, Youtube)

Haines began the interview by asking what it was like for Kamala Harris to be in competition with women she respected and worked with, other candidates who were running for President and were in the lead to be asked to fill Biden’s ticket for the Vice President spot.

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Workers Lab Announces Innovation Fund $150K Winners

From March to April 2020, The Workers Lab issued an open call for applications to the Innovation Fund, a program co-sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Innovation Fund is designed to grant $150,000 to three winners per investment cycle, awarding these highly sought-after prizes to organizations and individuals with the best ideas for improving the lives of workers.

Image Credit: The Workers Lab

“Our hope in this application cycle was to better understand what innovations are out there reimagining the kinds of support workers lean on to make it all work,” said Tiffany Ferguson, program director at The Workers Lab. “That could mean services, tools, or programs – any range of ideas that, with an investment from The Innovation Fund, could make it easier for workers to access and use their full potential.”

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I Am A Scientist: Changing How We See Women In Science

Editor’s Note: The following essay is by Stephanie Fine Sasse, founder of The Plenary, Co., a 501(c)3 nonprofit committed to making social and environmental issues more accessible through science, art, and play.

A few years ago, I sat across from twelve dynamic, accomplished, and inspiring women. They were artists, dancers, singers, musicians, gamers, athletes, activists, and moms. 

I am a scientist
Stephanie Fine Sasse, Founder of The Plenary Co. (Image Credit: Eric Shilling)

And of course, they were scientists.

I watched their eyes light up as they spoke about the curiosities and purpose behind their work. And I watched their eyes narrow as they reflected on the challenges that they faced. Many of them spoke about the important roles of failure, creativity, and collaboration in the sciences; concepts that are too often missing from the job description. And others shared their favorite parts of their work: discovery, travel, teamwork, writing, or mentoring students.

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