On September 17, 2019, JWFNY will for the first time host The Convening, a day-long event that will bring businesswomen and philanthropists together to discuss the field of women social entrepreneurship. The goal is to shed light on the ideas and skills women have to identify and address human rights needs around the world. Hopefully, the money will follow.
Menasseh and Litwok will be joined by over a dozen agents of change, including Elizabeth Elting, who sold her global business-solutions company, TransPerfect to focus on raising up women leaders; Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman who has written extensively about global social entrepreneurship; and Mazal Shaul, the Executive Director of WePower, a non-partisan Israeli NGO that promotes and trains women for public office in Israel.
At JWFNY, we are fortunate to witness firsthand social entrepreneurs’ brilliant skills and accomplishments. For example, after delivering babies in an African refugee camp, midwife Rachel Zaslow decided to bring a new model of care to remote Atiak, Uganda. Today, her organization, Mother Health International, is significantly altering outcomes. While the Ugandan infant mortality rate is 64 per 1,000 births, in Atiak the rate is now 11 per 1,000 births. That’s even lower than for blacks in the United States, who suffer an infant mortality rate of 18 per 1,000 births.
Yet despite stellar outcomes, we know that women still have a tough time raising money for initiatives focused on improving the lives of women and girls. According to a 2018 report by Human Rights Funders Network, only 23% of the $9.4 billion in human rights foundation funding from 2011-2015 targeted women and girls – more than 50% of the population.