Tag Archives: women

J Mase III of #BlackTransMagick seeks to redistribute resources – Daily Illini

Posted: February 20, 2017 at 7:34 pm

Photo Courtesy of Windy City Med

J Mase III performs on Dec. 26th. The poet and activist will be featured Monday at the Women’s Resources Center as part of #BlackTransMagick.

J Mase III and Vita E partnered up to create #BlackTransMagick in 2015, and have traveled around the country performing on college campuses and for community organizations since then.

The duo is scheduled to perform at 12 p.m. on Monday at the Womens Resources Center as part of the Office of Inclusion & Intercultural Relations Lunch on Us weekly discussion series.

The Daily Illini talked to J Mase III over the weekend about the importance of inclusionary spaces on college campuses.

J Mase III: #BlackTransMagick originated through myself and Vita, we are part of the administrative team for an organization called awQward. awQward is a trans and queer people of color specific talent agency we use the acronym TQPOC. Were both performers and we had an opportunity that kind of showed up through us doing some outreach and talking about the organization in probably June of 2015, so about two years ago. I was scheduled to perform with another awQward artist who fell sick. Vita was still new to the (organization) and we had never performed together. We put it together fairly quickly and had only about one hour to rehearse. We just started creating material from that.

JM: Primarily we perform at colleges and universities. We also do some community organizations and things like that. I think for us, what our major goal is with #BlackTransMagick, as well as with awQward, is really about the redistribution of resources from larger institutions to black and brown trans, queer folks. We use art as a way to create space for cooperative economics, so thats part of it. We also try to provide our work free to smaller black and brown organizations and institutions, or at a low cost, so that we can still be in the communities that know us and help to facilitate our work.

JM: I think whats important for most people, especially on college campuses to recognize, is that the resources in colleges and universities are very much stolen from communities of color. Even in spaces doing LGBTQ work and/or other social justice-centered practices. The institution as a whole when we talk about the land that institutions take up, when we talk about the money that institutions have theres no such thing as creating wealth in the United States of America without taking that from black and brown people through our bodies and labor. And so its important because its a redistribution of those resources back to the spaces from which they were stolen. Its also when we talk about being inclusive of LGBTQ folks, the people in the LGBTQ community most likely to be impacted by violence, lack of access to education, lack of access to jobs, are trans and queer people of color. So its being more honest about who is impacted by these situations. So it behooves people to be honest when they say theyre trying to create intersectional spaces that are rooted in social justice.

JM: I dont know that its something that cant be accomplished through (either) platform, I think that we tend to take different routes of understanding based on the medium. So theres something that I can explain to you intellectually, so you know it. But, through art we actually feel something and were compelled to do something about it. Intellectually, I know that my life as a black person and a trans person is important, but its through art that I actually felt that it mattered.

JM: Everyone is welcome, but what we do specifically is center the experiences of black and brown trans, queer folks of color. I think for me, and I cant speak for Vita, I know for myself a lot of times, people try to tell me Oh, your work is to help people who are not like you learn how to accept you. Thats not what my work is about. My work is Im a black, trans, Muslim person on this planet, and for a long time, I didnt know I had a right to space. So my commitment is to create space for myself and for people in my community, to take up intentional space and take back resources from institutions that seek to erase us. So I encourage TQPOC folks to come, I encourage folks who want to be in solidarity with TQPOC folks to come.


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J Mase III of #BlackTransMagick seeks to redistribute resources – Daily Illini

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How mobile technology is transforming lives in rural India – TechCrunch

Posted: at 7:09 pm

Melissa Jun Rowley Crunch Network Contributor

Melissa Jun Rowley is a journalist, entrepreneur and activist focused on the intersection of storytelling, technology and social justice. As the founder and CEO of Humanise, Inc., she is developing The Toolbox, a data-driven humanitarian initiative created by musician Peter Gabriel.

Deep in a rural village in India outside the city of Jhansi, children play on dirt roads where goats and cows roam. The humble and colorful homes have mud floors, and women collect drinking water from wells.

All the sights and sounds are quintessential aspects of the region, with the exception of one feature the use of smartphones to save lives. In this village, women healthcare workers, known as accredited social health activists (ASHAs), use a mobile application called mSakhi to help them educate expecting mothers about maternal and neonatal danger signs.

Funded byQualcomm Wireless Reachand developed byIntraHealth International, mSakhi is currently being used by 329 ASHAs to benefit 16,000 mothers. Amobile broadband initiativeaccomplishing such a task in rural India is no small feat.

According to the national health ministry, Indias newborn mortality rate stands at29 per 1,000 live births. The country is aiming to get the number down to a single digit. Additionally, the literacy rate among females in India is low. A background paper done by the New York-based International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity revealed in October of last year that only48 percent of India girlsstudying up to the fifth grade are literate.

As for internet connectivity, according to a Pew Research Center poll, a mere22 percent of Indias adultscould get online in 2015. That being said, there are nationwide efforts being made to get people connected. The countysDigital Indiaprogram aims to digitally empower citizens and provide broadband in remote areas. As part of this plan, the government wants to make mobile connectivity available in more than 40,000 villages by 2018.

In the meantime, mSakhi is still able to have an impact, because the application is designed to manage low connectivity. The data thats fed into mobile devices is stored offline. When theres a network thats available, the data is then uploaded to a server.

Frontline health worker Ram Kumari Sharma travels to villages across India. Using mSakhi , she registers the details of pregnant women, new mothers and newborn babies, and gives them medical examinations. Through text and animated images the tool assists her in describing the day-to-day symptoms patients should look out for and how they should address them.

The mSakhi app also supports auxiliary nurse midwives (ANMs) working in the field. Anita VT is an ANM who has worked in the village health center for the last 20 years, registering patients, delivering babies and vaccinating children. While the facility she works in is no more than a small room with a few manual tools, the mobile technology she uses brings an aspect of the process into the 21st century.

I can do everything on this, says VT, pointing to her tablet. Why should I do it on paper?

Meenakshi Jain, IntraHealth senior advisor of programs, says mSakhi as a whole is enabling a more cost-effective and efficient health registration process.

The government of India has a program across the county where every pregnant mother has to go into an online system, she explains. Its the duty of frontline workers like ASHAs and midwives to make this happen. So they have the job of identifying and registering pregnant women. The catch is that they have to fill out forms, and then travel 10-20 km, sit with a data entry operator at a community health center, and then get the data fed into the computer. What mSakhi does is it saves a lot of paper time.

To get the funding needed to scale the mSakhi program, IntraHealth is generating evidence to share with stakeholders the federal government, state government and donors that mSakhi is improving the health and well-bring of mothers and children. Jain says she would like the government to implement mSakhi or any similar application, as long as it empowers frontline health workers to do their jobs better and uses the most recent technology. If IntraHealth is able to bring in more funding, mSakhi will continue to evolve and include technical areas such as family planning and literacy.

About 450 kilometers from Jhansi, the nonprofitPlanned Social Concern (PSC)is providing micro-finance opportunities to women in a village outside the city of Jaipur.

A number of PSCs micro-finance participants are able to build their own small businesses. One of the women in the program says she was able to build a new home and send her kids to school, thanks to PSC.

This economic empowerment is being enhanced through the power of mobile broadband. Through a partnership with Qualcomm Wireless Reach, PSC was able to digitize its entire loan-making process in 2014. The program is now 100 percent paperless.

Ravi Gupta, COO of PSC, says that through using 3G-connected tablets and a mobile application called MicroLekha, the organization is able to function faster and be more transparent.

When we were doing it [making loans] manually it used to take 17 to 18 days to process a loan, says Gupta. Now with MicroLekha we can place a loan in three to four days.

Because all the documents are stored digitally, theres no need for customers to submit paperwork each time they apply for loans. When customers pay back their loans they get receipts and account updates via SMS.

This is just the beginning. When Digital India is able to fully penetrate the rural parts of the country, hopefully even more mobile tech designed to assist health workers, educate families and facilitate small business opportunities will be implemented.

My wish is that large tech firms will take cues from these mobile for impact programs, and create similar initiatives for poor parts in the Western world, as well.


How mobile technology is transforming lives in rural India – TechCrunch

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Screening of kin of breast cancer victims vital, says genome expert – The Hindu

Posted: at 6:47 pm

Every woman who had ovarian or breast cancer with the BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation, and was detected after her diagnosis, is a missed opportunity to prevent a cancer. No sister or daughter of a person with such a mutation should die of breast or ovarian cancer, it doesnt have to happen; it is completely preventable, Mary-Claire King, Professor of Genome Sciences at the University of Washington, said here on Monday. In a sense, it all began with Prof. King after she identified the mutation in the BRCA1 gene that causes breast cancer.

Genetic testing is crucial for prevention, treatment, and families, Prof. King underlined throughout her lecture on Understanding Inherited Breast and Ovarian Cancer: From Gene Discovery to Precision Medicine and Public Health. Prof. King was in Chennai for the first Cell Press-TNQ India distinguished Lectureship Series, 2017. She will be speaking in three other cities: Bengaluru on Wednesday, New Delhi on Friday, and Kolkata, the following Tuesday.

Prof. King also had a proposition for India to undertake to test genetically every breast and ovarian cancer patient for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 and all other known breast and ovarian cancer genes. The yield in testing of patients will probably be 18 per cent of ovarian cancer patients who have a mutation in one of these genes and about 10-15 per cent of breast cancer patients who do, with a higher proportion of younger women.

Informed choice

She went on to add that it was important because a patient who finds that she has a mutation can decide whether to remove her ovaries and fallopian tubes in her late 30s or 40s so that she does not get breast cancer; that her sisters and daughters can be aware that they should undergo genetic testing ideally. If they are resistant to that, then they can be subject to surveillance, at least. The sister or daughter of a patient with such mutations has a 50-50 chance of acquiring a mutation herself, the geneticist said.

The costs for such testing have come down drastically, Prof. King said. The cost is much less, even lower than it was a year ago. For instance, in the [United] States, in Indian terms, it costs about Rs. 15,000 to test all the genes all at once. It used to be 20 times that just a couple of years ago. She also touched upon the new Broca Gene Panel available now, that runs a single blood sample through tests for all known classes of mutation that cause breast and ovarian cancer.

Prof. King came back many times during her lecture to the role of menarche in breast cancer. When menarche occurs at a younger age, good epidemiological evidence suggests that the interval between menarche and child birth has a direct relationship with the risk of breast cancer. As the interval increases, the risk also increases, she explained.

Generational change

One study showed that women born before 1958, have, a lower risk of developing breast or ovarian cancer, than say, women born after 1958. This cannot be genetics. This difference is, I think, the same reasons that we see a rapid increase in incidence of breast cancer. Between these generations, there was change in womens lives.

Of course, plenty of women who do not carry the mutation, have the disease too. Some of the women actually have inherited the mutation from the father and not the mother. Their decision to go in for prophylactic surgeries removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes, and/or double mastectomies depends on their personal experience. Most women who go in for surgery have watched a mother or sister die of breast or ovarian cancer, Prof. King explained.

N. Ram, chairman, Kasturi and Sons, introduced the speaker, while Mariam Ram, MD, TNQ Books and Journals, spoke of the lecture series through the years.

Emilie Marcus, CEO, Cell Press, announced the names of the finalists of the Inspiring Science awards: Balaji Banoth, Vijay Soni, Richa Pahuja, Abhishek Trivedi, Pankaj Kumar Dubey, and Ramya Purkanti.

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Screening of kin of breast cancer victims vital, says genome expert – The Hindu

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In Conversation With: Priyanka Lama at London Fashion Week – VERVE

Posted: at 6:41 pm


Text by Sadaf Shaikh

How have you incorporated the theme of The Indian Pastoralists in your showcase? The Indian Pastoralists represent the varied artisanal communities that inhabit a few pockets across the mountains in India. I have taken inspiration from the life of the highland communities of Lachen and Lachung in the foothills of the Sikkim Himalayas. Almost trans-human in nature, as believed in folklore, they have been living in self-sustaining societies, in harmony with nature. Untouched and unaffected by modernism, they live in a metaphysical state.

What are the elements that influenced your collectionThe Unreached?As the name signifies, these are communities that have rarely been written about or researched on. My designs takea deconstructed approach from the bakhu and honju, which are traditional garments worn by the women from that region.

What are the local elements that you have tried to retain?I have used the indigenous Eri and its yarn waste exclusively for this collection. The fiber is natures own upcycled product, where the cocoon is technically waste after the silkworm transforms and leaves, earning its name of peace or non-violence silk.

What does the P.E.L.L.A woman symbolise?A P.E.L.L.A woman finds poetry in fashion. She is someone who appreciates the beauty of true craftsmanship and has an eye for the most inconspicuous of details.

How have you maintained abalance between an Indian and global aesthetic? My work blurs the boundaries of what we perceive is Indian or global. I think it is very important to appreciate design in its true form, regardless of origin or destination.

What are the techniques and textiles used? P.E.L.L.A as a label incorporates zero-waste design techniques in pattern-making. This means eliminating waste in the design phase itself. You will see garments made out of a single block of fabric which is used to create the silhouette. The finishing is painstakingly hand-rolled and blind-hemmed to create a boundaryless design.

London isDiverse. It has a beautiful mix of people from all around the world, and the very fact they are acceptingis beautiful.

A show that you would want to attend at London Fashion Week J.W.Anderson.

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McGraw One Step From Hoop Immortality :: Notre Dame Women’s … – Notre Dame Official Athletic Site

Posted: February 19, 2017 at 11:14 am

Feb. 18, 2017

By Leigh Torbin

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Notre Dame’s Karen and Kevin Keyes Family Head Women’s Basketball Coach Muffet McGraw has taken the penultimate step towards the sport’s ultimate lifetime honor as she is included on the list of 14 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame’s Class of 2017, announced on Saturday.

Also a finalist for enshrinement in 2016, McGraw will learn if is she is one of the latest enshrines on April 3 at the men’s basketball Final Four in Glendale, Arizona. Joining McGraw as women’s committee finalists are Rebecca Lobo, Kim Mulkey and the pioneering teams from Wayland Baptist University as a collective unit.

McGraw, who guided the Irish to the 2001 national championship and seven Final Four appearances, is the winningest single-sport coach in Irish lore with 756 wins. Over her 30-year coaching career, McGraw is 844-267 (.760), making her the sixth-winningest active coach nationally and the 10th-winningest all-time at the Division I level. She is the sixth-winningest female coach in women’s basketball history and one of just four women to ever win 750 games at a single school.

She is the 2017 recipient of the Wooden Awards’ Legends of Coaching Award, becoming just the third female to receive this honor, joining Tennessee’s Pat Summitt and Stanford’s Tara VanDerveer. She is the fourth women’s coach to be recognized with this honor, joining Summitt, VanDerveer and UConn’s Geno Auriemma.

Among her countless other career highlights:

* She is one of five coaches (men’s or women’s) in Division I history with 800 wins, seven Final Fours and five NCAA title game appearances, joining the elite company of Summitt, Auriemma, Duke men’s coach Mike Krzyzewski and the late North Carolina men’s coach Dean Smith, all of whom are enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

* McGraw is the only coach to be named the consensus national coach of the year three times, sweeping the Associated Press, Women’s Basketball Coaches Association, Naismith Award and United States Basketball Writers Association honors in 2001, 2013 and 2014.

* Only four coaches have ever competed in the national championship game five times and McGraw is joined in this lofty regard by Hall of Famers Summitt, Auriemma and Louisiana Tech’s Leon Barmore. The Irish reached the sport’s final game in 2001, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015.

* Her decades of consistent winning includes guiding the Irish to 14 Sweet 16 appearances in the past 20 years, making Notre Dame one of just five teams nationally to do so.

* McGraw’s 29 20-win seasons ties Georgia’s Andy Landers, for seventh in Division I history.

* Over the past six seasons, only UConn (209) has won more games than Notre Dame’s even 200.

* Under McGraw, Notre Dame has made 23 NCAA Championship appearances, including a current string of 21 consecutive NCAA tournament berths, marking the fifth-longest active run of consecutive appearances and seventh-longest streak at any time in NCAA tournament history. During this current streak (1996-2016), Notre Dame has won at least one NCAA postseason game 19 times.

* Notre Dame’s current stretch of 25 consecutive winning seasons, all under McGraw, is the ninth-longest in NCAA history.

* McGraw has led the Irish to eight regular season or tournament conference championships. Notre Dame is presently three-time defending champions of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

* Her lasting legacy of mentoring successful people along with merely successful players is reflected in having perfect NCAA Graduation Success Rate (GSR) score in seven of the past nine years (2007-16). In that time, Notre Dame is one of four programs in the country to record a perfect GSR score and go on to play for the national title later that same season (something the Fighting Irish have now done four times, most recently in 2015).

McGraw’s current Irish team is ranked No. 7 in the nation and stands at 24-3, marking the 11th year in a row and the 23rd time in the past 24 seasons that Notre Dame has won at least 20 games. Notre Dame leads the ACC with a 12-1 conference record as it aims for its fourth straight ACC regular season crown and sixth consecutive outright regular season conference title overall, including the final two years in the BIG EAST. The Irish return to the court at 5 p.m. on Sunday when they face No. 21 Syracuse at the Carrier Dome live on ESPN2.


Leigh Torbin, athletics communications associate director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2013 and coordinates all media efforts for Notre Dame’s women’s basketball and men’s golf teams. A native of Framingham, Massachusetts, Torbin graduated from the University of Massachusetts in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in sports management. He has previously worked full-time on the athletic communications staffs at Vanderbilt, Florida, Connecticut and UCF.

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McGraw One Step From Hoop Immortality :: Notre Dame Women’s … – Notre Dame Official Athletic Site

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Give us Kim family’s DNA or no body, Malaysian police tell North Korea – CNN

Posted: February 18, 2017 at 3:50 am

Selangor Police Chief Abdul Samah Mat said without DNA from a next of kin, they won’t hand over Kim Jong Nam’s body or release the autopsy report, which could reveal the cause of death.

But North Korea says it will “reject” the results of a “forced” autopsy which was not witnessed by its officials, according to a statement from the country’s ambassador to Malaysia, Kang Chol. The ambassador demanded the immediate release of the body.

Kim Jong Nam died after being attacked at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on Monday. South Korean officials claim he was poisoned.

Three people have been arrested so far in relation to Kim’s murder: an Indonesian woman, a Malaysian man and another woman carrying Vietnamese identification.

Four days after the killing, many questions remain unanswered. Here’s what we know so far.

Kim was on his way to catch a flight Monday morning to see his family in Macau, where he’s lived since his departure from North Korea years ago.

The Chinese territory, a short ferry or helicopter ride from Hong Kong, is a popular gambling destination with mainland Chinese.

The exact details of Kim’s murder are sketchy but Selangor State Criminal Investigations Department Chief Fadzil Ahmat told Reuters Kim “felt like someone grabbed or held his face from behind.”

Kim felt dizzy and immediately went to an airport customer assistance counter, seeking medical help. They were concerned enough to take him to the on-premises clinic.

An ambulance was called to take Kim to the hospital, but he died on the way.

No one is exactly sure how Kim died.

Initially, local media put forth reports of poison needles and deadly sprays, but it wasn’t even clear whether Kim was killed or had a heart attack.

Then on Wednesday, South Korea’s Lee Cheol Woo, the chairman of the country’s National Assembly Intelligence Committee, publicly declared Kim had been murdered.

The autopsy may have revealed more, but despite having been finished on Wednesday, no results have been released.

As of yet, Deputy Prime Minister Hamidi said no next of kin had come forward to claim the body.

No motive for the killing has been revealed, nor any explanation of how he was poisoned.

South Korea’s Lee told lawmakers on Wednesday that North Korea killed Kim but, again, he didn’t explain how he knew it.

“Pyongyang has been attempting to assassinate Kim Jong Nam for the past five years,” a South Korean legislator, Lee Chul Woo, told reporters Wednesday. He didn’t provide any evidence.

When asked about rumors that North Korea had been involved in Kim’s death, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi told a press conference Thursday it was “only speculation.”

North Korea has requested Kim’s body, but Malaysian authorities said they wouldn’t release it until investigations are complete. The North Korean ambassador’s statement said Malaysia initially told consular officials that Kim died of a heart attack on the way to a hospital.

North Korea accused Malaysia of “collusion with the hostile forces towards our government.”

Grainy security video from the airport at the time of Kim’s killing showed two young female suspects. One of the women is seen wearing a blue skirt and white t-shirt with “LOL” written on it.

The first woman was arrested on Wednesday morning at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, two days after the attack. She was carrying Vietnamese documents, which said her name was Doan Thi Huong and gave her age as 30.

Later that evening, 26-year-old Malaysian Muhammad Farid Bin Jalaluddin was taken into custody. Police said he was arrested to assist in their investigations.

At 2 a.m. on Thursday, Jalaluddin led investigators to his girlfriend, 25-year-old Indonesian Siti Aishah, who was then arrested on suspicion of being involved in Kim’s death. No charges have been laid.

Born in 1971, he was the first son of then-North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.

His mother was one of the dictator’s favored mistresses, actress Song Hye-rim, and for a while Kim Jong Nam was the most public of his father’s sons.

But in 2001 he reportedly lost the elder Kim’s favor when he tried to use forged documents to visit Tokyo Disneyland.

His half-brother, Kim Jong Un, was born to a different mistress, Ko Yong Hui, who was politically ambitious and enthusiastic to see her son succeed his father as leader.

But author Yoji Gomi, who wrote a book in 2012 called “My Father, Kim Jong Il, and Me” said Kim Jong Nam thought his younger brother wasn’t fit to run the country.

CNN’s Andreena Narayan, Sandi Sidhu and journalist KL Chan contributed to this report.

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Give us Kim family’s DNA or no body, Malaysian police tell North Korea – CNN

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Q & A with Sr. Maureen Gallagher, setting up financial independence paths for women in Mexico – Global Sisters Report (blog)

Posted: February 17, 2017 at 1:45 am

In Jurez, Mexico, where cartels have left families mourning loved ones and women fending for their families, the Centro Santa Catalina provides opportunity for about 20 women to utilize various creative and management skills to help them generate a survival income.

When farms throughout Mexico started closing after the North American Free Trade Agreement came into effect in the late 1990s, men migrated into the cities to find work.

“The men couldn’t get jobs because they had a sixth-grade education and weren’t used to living in the city,” Dominican Sr. Maureen Gallagher said. “The women stayed at home with the children, and sometimes there wasn’t enough money for food.”

The “colonia” where the women live, Colonia Pnfilo Natera, is built on what was once the city’s garbage dump, with homes constructed out of scrap materials; many lack electricity, water and basic city services. For most of these women, Centro Santa Catalina is their only source of income.

As the marketing director for the sewing cooperative across the border from El Paso, Texas, Gallagher helps the women sell their projects, including aprons, table runners, purses, shawls, laptop holders and “Mexican prayer flags.” In addition to the sewing co-op, the center also provides tutoring, spirituality classes and a garden for the women to grow and share vegetables.

GSR: How did Centro Santa Catalina begin?

Gallagher: It was started by Sr. Donna Kustusch, an Adrian Dominican sister, and she started it in ’96 or ’97. She was a professor in the religion department at Sienna Heights College, and she had decided she had to walk the talk. She brought students down for immersion in Ciudad Jurez and later decided that’s where she’d start her ministry helping economically poor women. That eventually led to a prayer group with some of the women, and from the prayer group, the center developed for women who were mostly migrants from the rural areas.

Sister Donna said, ‘Aside from praying, what can we do to help you?’ They said they really needed money, so they decided to start a co-op.

Sr. Maureen Gallagher, left, selling products the women at Centro Santa Catalina have sewn. (Provided photo)

The idea was that they would have a business and be able to stay in Mexico which is what they wanted to do and support their families and have a decent life. At this time, the co-op has its own president, vice president, secretary, and they make their own decisions. The only problem is with selling the products, because we have to sell them in the U.S., and the women don’t speak English. And only five of them have visas, but they can only go 40 miles within the U.S.

I’m the marketing director, and [along with two other sisters] we help them find places where they can sell. If we have a place in El Paso, then women come and sell things themselves so they can learn the process. Right now, we’re trying to make the co-op independent, so that they run the co-op, take care of all the money they get, and continue it on their own once we leave [ideally by 2020].

Tell me about other programs offered at the center.

In Juarez, there aren’t enough schools for the children in elementary grades they go either in the morning or afternoon so we’ve trained 10 women to be tutors. The nice thing about that is most of them got their GEDs through the center; we paid for them to get it.

This past year, we hired a director the plan was for a Mexican woman to take over the center so that it would be owned and run by Mexicans. We hired a director, and through her intercession, we’ve been able to send the tutors to a class where they are now certified teacher aides, so if something should happen to us or to the center, they have a skill they can market.

We also have a youth program for teenagers, and we’re starting a garden program, and the idea is that that eventually becomes a co-op for them to share vegetables.

We don’t charge the families anything to send their children to tutors; it’s a two-way thing. They’re getting help with their homework, but they’re also being kept off the streets while their parents are working.

All the money goes into a bank, and at the end of the month, they have to decide how much money they need for repairs, new products and materials. Then they share equally what’s left over with the 18 women that make up the co-op. Average is $160 [U.S. dollars, per person] when you don’t have a big sale, and that’s really just for survival. As marketing director, I try to find more places for them to sell.

Two of the women work on sewing projects at the co-op. (Provided photo)

Tell me about the women you work with.

Juarez was a place where two cartels were fighting, and during that time, it was around 2010, every one of our women in the co-op had either a relative or a family member killed. It was total anarchy.

Many of them are battered women. One of our women in the co-op has four or five children and just left her husband. She had left him before, but she financially couldn’t continue, so she invited him back. When the co-op started picking up and we were getting more money, she felt she could get rid of him again, so she kicked him out of the house. She had to get another job in a factory, so she works two jobs. He put her in the hospital five years ago because he beat her so badly.

Of the 18 women, I know three of them definitely can’t read or write. One is now the vice president of the co-op and the mother of five children.

Another one who came to the co-op, Victoria, was there for a three-month trial period to see if she can sew. She couldn’t do anything, but the women didn’t want to let her go because she had no income. She was a widow, and her children had all moved back with their children and were really taking advantage of her. So the co-op hired her as the ironer, and she’s the world’s best ironer. She can’t read or write, but the women try to help her. They have that community spirit of helping one another.

I’ve seen the women grow unbelievably. We went through a bad time at the center, when a woman got angry at our director, Rosa, because Rosa had bought heaters for the classrooms. This woman thought they should’ve gotten the money in their salary instead of the heaters, and a group of women had locked us out of the center.

But while we worked with the [El Paso and Juurez] dioceses and lawyers, the tutors and co-op members who didn’t turn against us took it upon themselves to continue the center [for kindergarten classes]. They were able to find a house that they rented and got donations of chairs and tables from neighbors. When we came back to tell them what we had figured out, they said, ‘Well, we have a house, and we’re going to continue’ [holding classes there until the end of the school year]. They could not have done that five years ago. We looked at them as they grew in confidence and authority and ability to take hold of their own lives, which is absolutely amazing and confirming that what the center had done was help these women grow.

How has this work changed you as a person?

It’s helped me understand other people and other cultures. I had a hard time learning Spanish because I ministered for 40 years in Chicago, so my background had no different cultures it was just Chicago, Chicago, Chicago. But then I came down here, and I learned the Mexican culture is a beautiful culture, and I picked up many things, like hugging people that was not part of my background in Chicago.

I’m definitely a different person. I’m not quite as confident that I have all the answers. My background is teaching, and as teachers, we have a set way of doing things and think our way is the best way. I’m an Irish Catholic, Southside Chicagoan, and we have all the answers. But I’ve learned we don’t.

Victoria irons the finished products to make them ready for sale. (Provided photo)

[Soli Salgado is a staff writer forGlobal Sisters Report. Her email address isssalgado@ncronline.org. Follow her on Twitter:@soli_salgado.]

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Q & A with Sr. Maureen Gallagher, setting up financial independence paths for women in Mexico – Global Sisters Report (blog)

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Advocates say more women need financial independence: ‘We really do need that extra leg up’ – Globalnews.ca

Posted: at 1:45 am

Kim Krushell got acrash course in money management as a little girl. It had nothing to do with her own piggy bank. She learned by witnessingthe struggles of her own mother and grandmother.

My mother went through a divorce. My stepdad got a lawyer and she got emotional, and financially it was really hard on her, Krushell recalled. It took her a lot of years to come back from that.

Krushell also saw her grandmother experience a divorce after 36 years of marriage.

I got to see what happens when her credit card was cut right in front of me as a kid.

As a result, Krushell is an equal partner in her household finances and has becomea passionate advocate for womens financial literacy.

Women unfortunately do live in more poverty. Women are more challenged with finances so we really do need that extra leg up, and need to have those conversations about what we need to do with our finances.

READ MORE: Why women need to plan their finances differently than men

Krushelland a group of dedicated volunteers have launched Women and Money, an initiative to educateCanadian women about finances; everything from buying a house to estate planning. In early February, Women and Money hosted a workshop to connect Edmonton women withfinancial experts. In the future, the group hopes to launch webinars and other events across the country.

Men take advantage of what the banks offer. They take advantage of a lot of free seminars and this is why my girlfriends who are in banking were saying, You know, we need to do something different. We need to reach out to women in a different way,’ Krushell said. That is what Women and Money is really about.

2017Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Advocates say more women need financial independence: ‘We really do need that extra leg up’ – Globalnews.ca

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New Barbarians: Inside Rolling Stones’ Wild Seventies Spin-Off – RollingStone.com

Posted: at 1:43 am

Remember that time when Ronnie Wood released a solo album, put together a band to promote it that included Keith Richards and fusion bassist Stanley Clarke, and played a bunch of arena shows centered not around Richards but perversely Wood and his songs?

Unless you’re the most diehard of Rolling Stones fans, you probably have zero memory of that moment. But Rob Chapman’s new book, New Barbarians: Outlaws, Gunslingers and Guitars (Voyageur Press), finally tells the story of one of the most oddball and least-chronicled moments in the Stones’ history.

As Chapman details in his art-crammed book, Wood and his new label, Columbia, decided he should play some shows to promote his 1979 solo album, Gimme Some Neck. Richards, who was in between Stones sessions, signed on to his bandmate’s ad-hoc group. Richards was also eager to hit the road, because, as Chapman writes, he was “on the run from heroin, [girlfriend] Anita Pallenberg and endless psychotherapy sessions” after his 1977 drug bust in Canada. The band, a truly odd lot of musicians, included two naturals, Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan and on-again, off-again Stones saxman Bobby Keys, along with two others Clarke and Meters drummer Ziggy Modeliste who had barely played rock & roll before.

For a brief moment, Chapman reports, Neil Young almost joined the lineup after stopping into early rehearsals for the tour. He eventually opted out due to the birth of one of his children and the editing chores involved in his then-upcoming concert movie, Rust Never Sleeps. But after Young remarked “you guys are nothing but a bunch of barbarians,” the ad-hoc band at least had its name, adding a “New” after learning there was another band called the Barbarians. Ringo Starr and Boz Scaggs also stopped by rehearsals but, like Young, didn’t join up.

Over the course of its month-long tour, ending with shows at England’s Knebworth Festival on a bill with Led Zeppelin, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, and Todd Rundgren and Utopia, the New Barbarians crammed in a lifetime of rock & roll. Drugs, booze and private jets were a daily treat; a small room was built near the back of the stage so the band could get high without the audience noticing. When Clarke offered Richards a health shake, Richards just replied, ruefully, “Stanley, Stanley.”

As Chapman reports, drama was also part of the recipe. Unsure if Wood’s name would sell out arenas, some on their business side began suggesting to reporters that the shows could include “special guests,” hinting at Mick Jagger, Bob Dylan and Jimmy Page. None of those musical pals ever materialized, and early in the tour, fans showed their displeasure at not seeing Mick but hearing an hour and a half of Wood originals, covers of blues and country songs, and the very rare Stones cover (usually “Honky Tonk Women”). In Milwaukee, a riot broke out, resulting in 81 arrests and a very pissed-off Richards.

Packed with details of stage designs, offstage and onstage photos and reproductions of tour T-shirts and limousine bills, New Barbarians is surely the last word on one of rock’s most oddball superstar tours. As a bonus, it also comes with a 10-track CD of previously unreleased live recordings including Wood’s “Mystifies Me” and covers of Chuck Berry’s “Sweet Little Rock & Roller” and the blues standard “Rock Me Baby” that revel in the band’s proudly sloppy swagger. Would a similar lineup with a similarly quirky set list make it anywhere near a 20,000-seat arena these days? Probably not, which only makes the story of the New Barbarians that much more flabbergasting today.

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NDP asks election watchdogs to probe Liberal donation reports – The Globe and Mail

Posted: February 15, 2017 at 9:42 pm

NDP asks election watchdogs to probe Liberal donation reports
The Globe and Mail
The Liberal Party say the amounts recorded in their quarterly filings with Elections Canada do not in fact reflect the precise donations being made in each instance. They say the figures include more than just the contribution; they also include money
Trudeau revives Liberal gvmt program designed to circumvent Canadian lawsLifesite
Liberals failed to educate voters on electoral reform, says profCBC.ca
Liberal Government Disappoints on Justice for Women, First NationsRaise the Hammer

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NDP asks election watchdogs to probe Liberal donation reports – The Globe and Mail

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