SDG05 – Gender Equality

These social entrepreneurs are accomplishing Sustainable Development Goal 5, Gender Equality: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

Celebrating the Gifts of Femininity, with Amy Stanton and Catherine Connors, The Feminine Revolution

The Feminine Revolution is a new book that boldly declares, feminine values are powerful. Run like a girl. Fight like a girl. Throw like a girl. Author Catherine Connors notes, “If you finish any sentence with ‘like a girl,’ it’s rarely a positive one.” And yet, as she and co-author Amy Stanton have discovered, in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world, feminine qualities can be superpowers. Connors and Stanton explore the gifts of femininity in their new book, The Feminine Revolution: 21 Ways to Ignite the Power of Your Femininity for a Brighter Life and a Better World. Chapter by chapter, they dare women to be emotional, own their…

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The Empowerment Bag: A Bag to End Human Trafficking, with Vaishali Umrikar

The Empowerment Bag is an eco-friendly brand of bags, that employs women at risk of sex trafficking. Vaishali Umrikar is a passionate social entrepreneur who is committed to fighting human trafficking. While she was in high school, she read the book, The Natashas: Inside the New Global Sex Trade by Victor Malarek. This book awakened her to the realities of modern-day human trafficking. She became involved in anti-trafficking advocacy groups throughout high school and college. Since then, Vaishali has worked with the Australian Government Office for Women, Chicago Probation Sex Offender Unit, and Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation. After graduating from college and beginning her corporate career, Vaishali realized her…

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This Social Entrepreneur is Changing the Story of Human Trafficking, with Stephanie Page, Stories Foundation

Stories Foundation is committed to resourcing the rescue and restoration of human trafficking victims through education, advocacy, and microgrants Between 600,000 and 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders every year. 80% are female, and half are children. Can this story be changed? Stephanie Page thinks so. Stephanie grew up in a safe and happy home. “I grew up in a close-knit family,” she says. “I am the oldest of 4 children, two boys, and two girls. I was a high achiever and a people pleaser. I loved my friends and being social. I loved the church. I loved my family. I was an avid reader.” Starting when she was…

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Hope, Cookies, and the End of Relationship Violence, with Junita Flowers, Junita’s Jar

Junita’s Jar donates a portion of their profits to end relationship violence. One year ago, Junita Flowers said, “Clarity comes while you are working.” And, she is always working. So, it comes as no surprise that she launched a new brand, Junita’s Jar. They offer new products, including 3 oz snack packs. She has a new overarching message, #HopeMunchesOn. And her new job title is “Hope Muncher in Chief.” Still, she remains true to her mission. She brings hope to women experiencing relationship violence. “Junita’s Jar is focused on creating meaningful conversations that foster education and awareness around relationship violence,” Junita explains. A portion of profits from each purchase of…

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This App Launched a Female Solidarity Movement, with Aine Mulloy, GirlCrew

GirlCrew is a social networking app for women to make new friends. It seems that female solidarity has never been more important. Women still struggle to gain meaningful power over their lives and choices. One in five women will experience violence at the hand of their intimate partner. Systemic gender discrimination still exists. Even though women make up 50.8% of the US population, only 39% of all managerial roles are held by women. When it comes to CEO positions, only 4.2% of Fortune 500 companies are run by women. Aine Mulloy of GirlCrew was born for a time like this. “It has always been important to me to be part…

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From #MeToo to #HeForShe, with Julie Kratz, Pivot Point

Julie Kratz is the author of One: How Male Allies Support Women for Gender Equality. Our 24-hour news cycle is filled with thousands of short-lived moments: a school shooting; government corruption; crisis in the Middle East. Each headline crowds out the next. It can be hard to focus on one story for any period of time. But every now and then, a story sticks around. It breaks through the noise of the busy news cycle. A moment becomes a movement. From the admission of a presidential candidate that he had groped women and gotten away with it, to the Women’s March last year, and gaining momentum with the Harvey Weinstein…

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Hira Batool Rizvi: Transforming Transportation for Women in Pakistan

She`Kab is transforming how women travel to and from work. When She`Kab Founder and CEO Hira Batool Rizvi started working in Pakistan, she quickly recognized a problem with transportation for working women. She estimates that about 90 percent of her colleagues feel unsafe going to and from work each day. And, like any good entrepreneur, she recognized this problem as an opportunity.  The problem with transportation leads women to stay home or to pay four times as much as men for safer travel options. Public transportation options for women in Pakistan are limited. A typical bus has one seat available for women and 27 seats for men. If women do manage…

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Designing Functional Workwear for Women, with Sarah Calhoun, Red Ants Pants

Red Ants Pants is the pioneer in manufacturing functional women’s workwear that fits and flatters. In 2000, Sarah Calhoun was leading trail crews in the backcountry of Montana when she ran into a problem. The only pants available for the kind of rugged, physical work she was doing were made for men. As Sarah points out, “Curvy women don’t fit very well into square men’s pants.” She took her idea for a line of women’s workwear to several companies, but no one was interested. Undaunted by a lack experience in business, textiles or manufacturing, Sarah bought a copy of Small Business for Dummies and set out to create the line…

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Making Technology Fun, Relevant, and Accessible for Girls, with Betty Gronneberg, uCodeGirl

uCodeGirl offers pathways to technology careers for teen girls by tapping into their curiosity, skills, and potential. Betty Gronneberg grew up in Ethiopia. She attended Addis Ababa University where she majored in statistics. Betty recalls a day in college when she saw her name on a list of students who had been accepted into the new Computer Science track. She was one of two female students on the list. This was 1991. The “world wide web” had not yet been invented. Betty learned to write simple programs in BASIC, an early computer language. Betty’s experience grew rapidly as the internet began to spread. She became a country-wide email administrator for…

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Clarity Comes While You Are Working, with Junita Flowers, Favorable Treats

Favorable Treats is a cookie company and social impact venture. Favorable Treats has a mission to let families across the country enjoy warm cookies in safe homes.  They produce and sell pre-portioned cookie dough. A percentage of their profits goes towards dating and domestic violence awareness and prevention. The founder of Favorable Treats, Junita Flowers grew up in a large family with seven brothers and sisters. Her mother and grandmother cooked and baked together. Junita says “The majority of my best childhood memories were spent in the kitchen.” In 2006, while staying home with her two small children, she began to experiment with cookie recipes. It reconnected her to her…

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