Women Making Waves

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Join Women’s Earth Alliance and Crabgrass as we celebrate the Global Women’s Water Initiative and the amazing women who have changed the lives of over 15,000 people in East Africa. We will be sharing stories from these remarkable women who just over a year ago had never picked up a shovel and are now winning awards, challenging gender stereotypes, earning money, getting grants, chairing local water boards and improving the health of their communities! It’s a night you won’t want to miss.

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Dr. Seema Tripathi: Leading Change at the Grassroots

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Dr. Seema Tripathi at a rally in U.P., India
Dr. Seema Tripathi at a rally in U.P., India
Women’s Earth Alliance (WEA) is thrilled to welcome Dr. Seema Tripathi to the Bay Area in early September! Dr. Seema is one of the leaders of WEA’s partner in India, Gorakhpur Environmental Action Group (GEAG), an organization that promotes the rights and just livelihoods of small and landless farmers in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
Dr. Seema has over 16 years of experience working in the development sector, coordinating various activities related to training, resource and communication materials on issues like gender and development, disaster management, climate change resilience and participatory development. She has rich experience organizing and working at the grassroots on community mobilization, leadership development and communication methodologies and has consulted with groups like UNICEF, NABARB and projects of the Indian government. Dr. Seema is a doctorate in Educational Psychology and is passionate about music and traveling.

GEAG is a grassroots organization working with small and landless women farmers through a people-centered approach focusing on their participation and empowerment for sustainable development.  In 2011, WEA was honored to partner with GEAG to fund the innovative Women, Food Security and Climate Change Training Program. Dr. Seema played a crucial role organizing this yearlong training program and developed a training manual for rural women, who are also grassroots community trainers and activists, and play a crucial role in building the resilience of vulnerable farmers in the face of climate change.

Special Event Honoring Dr. Seema! 
Please join us for Seeds of Resilience: Women Protecting their Right to Land and Food on September 12th at 6:30 PM at the David Brower Center in downtown Berkeley. Dr. Seema will share personal stories, struggles and victories of women farmers in the state of Uttar Pradesh, who are using advocacy campaigns and ecological farming as a key strategy to promote their economic and food security. Buy tickets here!
 
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Planting Seeds of Resilience

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Last week, we celebrated the Women’s Earth Alliance India Program at our special event–Seeds of Resilience: Women Farmers Striving in the Face of Climate Change.

Be sure to check out photos from the event here and watch the new India video!

We are touched by the outpouring of support from our community, and were glad to share personal stories of how women farmers hold the key to promoting food security in India. A special thank you to our Promotional Partners, and those who tabled at the Local Solutions Salon, including AWID, Balance Edutainment/Pacha’s Pajamas, Bay Localize, DIG Cooperative, Earth Island Institute, Ecology Center, Global Exchange, Global Fund for Women, Harmony Festival, IDEX, Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, Planting Justice, Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library, The Living Seed Company and Urban Adamah. A warm thank you to Todd Boston and Aharon for offering their musical gifts and performing live at the event.

We are proud to stand in solidarity with the efforts of our incredible grassroots partner, Gorakhpur Environmental Action Group, and to support the bold visions of rural women, who are the rising new leaders in their communities and are leading others by example by farming organically, by stewarding their natural resources and building the capacities of other women farmers to do the same.
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We are also grateful to be graced by the wise words of Joanna Macy. She, too, affirmed that the women farmers in the India Training, like Ram Ratti and Manju Devi, are leaders in growing food sustainably – a crucial role given how the modern world’s food system is impacting our environment and climate.
Thank you for planting seeds of resilience in our hearts by supporting the India Program. We look forward to deepening our work in India in 2012 and beyond.

November 4: Steadying the Seasons

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Photo by: Phillippe Ponchaux
Photo by: Phillippe Ponchaux
Women’s Earth Alliance is preparing to host our first Advocacy Training, November 4th – 6th, 2011, here at the David Brower Center in Berkeley.  With guidance from our Steering Committee and organizational partner, Indigenous Environmental Network, we’re convening 75 advocates and activists for three days of dialogue, learning and collaborative action towards environmental justice for Indigenous peoples.  The training will prepare advocates – from large law firms, national NGOs, and major universities – to use tested and emerging advocacy tools; build capacity for effective cross–cultural partnerships; and generate strategies for action on health and environmental justice.
We’re thrilled that this long-anticipated event is coming to fruition!  Please stay tuned for updates leading up to, and after, the Training, about the impacts of our work and the new initiatives emerging from this convening.  We honor the talented and dedicated advocates who are joining us to learn and participate.  As Tom Goldtooth, Executive Director of Indigenous Environmental Network, commends our participants: “thank you for standing strong in defense of the sacredness of Mother Earth and for our future generations.”
How can you be a part of our work with Indigenous peoples towards the protection of health, culture and sacred land?
On Friday, November 4th, join us for Steadying the Seasons: Indigenous Peoples on the Front Lines of Climate Change in North America.   This dynamic evening will include storytelling from three leading Indigenous climate justice activists, as well as a short film about the Athabascan tar sands and their impacts on Indigenous peoples and the climate.
Please see our website for more information and to buy tickets.  The evening begins with a reception at 6:30 PM; please arrive by 7:15 for the program.  2150 Allston Way in Berkeley.
See you there!

WEA at Bioneers: Leadership at the Nexus

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Last week, the WEA Team was thrilled to co-facilitate the 2011 Bioneers Post-Conference Intensive, Leadership at the Nexus: When Women Thrive, Communities Thrive. Along with Nina Simons, Co-Founder and CEO of Bioneers, WEA’s Directors and a dynamic group of multi-generational women leaders participated in a daylong session of personal vision cultivation, collective learning, and collaboration.

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Drawing upon their own experiences as well as the wisdom of WEA’s grassroots partners, the WEA Directors created a day full of effective and creative strategizing. Powerful exercises, personal story telling and intimate networking allowed this gathering of women to cultivate their own personal leadership. Participants created dynamic and unique visions, partook in SWOT (Strengths, Weakness Opportunities and Threats) analyses, and explored the boundaries – and the solutions to those boundaries – keeping them from accomplishing their goals in small groups. There is no doubt – When women leaders collaborate the world changes. This special space of exploration, self-critiquing and collaboration resulted in a 3-step action plan for the next month, as well as an assignment of accountability partners to support the women on their journey of leadership.

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Many thanks to Nina Simons and to the conference’s participants – we are honored to work with you in the cultivation of your personal leadership, and look forward to hearing about all of your future successes. You are whole women and whole leaders for a whole world!

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