Group Title: Exchange
Title: The Exchange
ALL VOLUMES CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00089933/00004
 Material Information
Title: The Exchange
Physical Description: v. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Peace Corps (U.S.) -- Office of Training and Program Support
Ferris, Barbara
Donor: Marianne Schmink ( endowment )
Publisher: Peace Corps, Office of Training and Program Support,
Peace Corps, Office of Training and Program Support
Place of Publication: Washington D.C
Publication Date: July 1994
Frequency: quarterly
regular
 Subjects
Genre: federal government publication   ( marcgt )
periodical   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Dates or Sequential Designation: Vol. 2, No. 2 (Spring/Summer 1988)-
General Note: Editor: Barbara Ferris.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00089933
Volume ID: VID00004
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 18329279
 Related Items
Preceded by: The WID Newsletter

Full Text



THti"E EX CHA NGE

WOMEN IN DEVELOPMENT E QUARTERLY PUBLICATION
JULY 1994 VOLUME NO. 19
of the United States

WOMEN IN DEVELOPMENT PHOTO
CONTEST

And The Winners Are...


First Place Worldwide
"Women Planting Rice"
PCV Albert J. Ament, Madagascar

































Second Place Worldwide
"Training Women in Micro-Business"
UNV Rachel Ushijinea, Cambodia









2








Support to Share


According to "an old Chinese
proverb" found near the xerox
machine in the Health Sector office
here in Peace Corps Washington,
"People who say it cannot be done
should not interrupt woman doing it."
And women are doing it-making
their contributions to the social and
economic development of their
countries and you sent us pictures
to show it. We received more than
157 pictures from Peace Corps
Volunteers and staff around the world
and from American United Nations
Volunteers, too. The winners were
chosen by RPCVs frequenting the
Returned Volunteer Center in
Washington. The selection process
was coordinated by two former WID
Coordinators (Gabon and Sao Tome e
Principe) now working here in
Washington. They ended up selecting
an overall winner and runner-up as
well as a winner and runner-up for
each of the four (Peace Corps) regions
of the world. I am sure that they
would have preferred to choose
twenty or thirty.

Everyone that has seen the photos has
been overwhelmed by their beauty.
We were also very moved by some of
your descriptions of these women and
the tireless work they are doing in
their countries to improve the daily
life-and the future-of people,
families, communities, societies. You
sent pictures of women doing so
many different things: women
planting rice and harvesting cabbages;
women working with children,
healthy ones and ones dying of
cancer; women making crystal;
women weaving; women organizing;
women doing business; women
carrying water pipes, firewood,
fodder, children, water, food; women
weighing babies; women teaching;
women learning; women doing
everything you could imagine. There
were pictures of little girls, young


women, middle-aged women, old
women; women in groups and women
alone. Powerful images all.

Thank you to everyone who took the
time to go through their pictures or go
out and take new ones just for the
contest. We will be setting up a
display of many of the photos here in
the Peace Corps Washington offices
so that all staff will have a chance to
see your pictures of the women with
whom you work. We will also put in
some of the other great pictures in
coming issues. Every day which
brought a letter and a photo or two-
or six or eight-was a day for
celebration and rededication because
it was just impossible not to be
transported from this distant office to
where you are and to the lives of your
friends, co-workers and counterparts.

This issue has several articles on
women and business submitted from
Volunteers as well as two articles by
Small Business specialists here in
Peace Corps/Washington. Because so
many Volunteers work with women
in small business projects, income
generating projects, credit union
projects, and other business-related
endeavors, I asked them to look at
some of the issues that non-business
Volunteers might want to think about,
too. I have highlighted some publica-
tions available through ICE which
might be useful to you as you work
with women in these business and
business-related areas. You can find
their descriptions in the Resources
section, under publications. Please
look in your in-country Resource
Center for them. If it doesn't have
them, your Resource Center manager
can order them for you or you can
order directly from ICE. I would like
to draw your attention especially to
WD0032 Women and Handicrafts:
Myth and Reality. Around the world,
many Volunteers and staff become


involved with artisans or groups of
artisans because of a love for their
beautiful products as well as out of a
desire to help them realize more
income from their labor. I, too, am
one of those people. This publication
is practical, to-the-point and helps
focus the basic questions which need
to be asked-and answered-before
undertaking a handicrafts project. It
is less than twenty pages long and is
very thought-provoking.

The December edition* of The
Exchange will focus on women and
Environment and Natural Resources.
The April edition will focus on
women and Health. Please send in
your articles on work that you are
doing in these areas. As I have said
before, remember that your innova-
tive approach just might spark the
creativity of someone else half a
world away.



*Thanks to you south-of-the-equator
folks for reminding me that spring,
winter, summer and fall are very
relative concepts. This is the Wash-
ington DC "hot, humid and hazy
edition." Word has it that in the
Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho it is
the "freezing, freezing, freezing
edition."


Betsy Davis
WID Coordinator








Bambara Bambara Bambara Bambara


Business Challenges for Women in the Soviet Union


Peace Corps works closely in the
business development sector with the
GEMINI Project, the principal A.I.D.-
funded worldwide activity in support
of microenterprise development. The
following is an excerpt of a recently
completed study of child care and pre-
school services in Volgograd, Russia.

Micro- and small business assess-
ments conducted in the former Soviet
republics have identified a number of
constraints to private small enterprise
development, including gender-
specific trends constraining women's
participation in the private sector
economy. One of the main con-
straints that women face is juggling
the dual responsibility of household
and child care on the one hand with
income earning activities on the other.

While the Soviet era did much to
promote women's education and
participation in the workforce,
household and child care responsibili-
ties are not generally shared. In order
to facilitate women's participation in
the Soviet labor force while maintain-
ing their full responsibility for the
household and children, protective
legislation was enacted. These laws
guaranteed women reinstatement
rights, partial salary and in-kind
subsidies to stay at home for up to
three years with their childrenn.
When mothers returned to work for
the state, either through municipalities
or larger enterprises, the state
provided relatively high quality child
care facilities at highly subsidized
rates.

The adjustments associated with the
privatization of the Russian economy
are in many ways limiting women's
options to balance household and
income earning activities. State
support for social services including
child care is diminishing and major
enterprises face difficult budget


decisions that render them unable to
take up the slack. The legislation
once designed to protect women is
backfiring as women become more
costly than men to employ. Women
with both young children and employ-
ment opportunities are faced with the
either/or decision whether to work or
stay home rather than deciding how to
manage work and child care as
opportunities become more limited.

There is also a large scale movement
of women out of paid positions in
industry, science and manufacturing
into more traditional occupations that
are less remunerative. The underem-
ployment of women given their
generally high levels of education has
deleterious economic and social
consequences for economic growth
and the status of women.

A study of the child care and pre-
school service sub-sector in
Volgograd was selected because
Volgograd is a large industrial city
with enterprises likely to be impacted
by the economic changes sweeping
Russia. The study was based on three
hypotheses: 1) The adjustment to a
privatized economy was forcing child
care centers to close; 2) Closings of
existing centers were forcing women
out of the workforce; and 3) Oppor-
tunities for women existed in the
provision of private child care
services. From the data gathered the
study determined that:
Child care centers are
closing but primarily due to a marked
decrease in the birth rate over the last
few years and not due to budgetary
constraints;
Women are exiting the
labor force at much higher rates than
for men but the lack of child care is
not a determinant; and
Growth in child care
services is limited mainly due to the
declining pre-school age population.


Though some opportunities exist
which could reduce the number of
existing child care workers from
having to leave the work force,
opportunities for new employment is
limited.

Yet there are two reasons why the
child care/pre-school subsector merits
attention. Significant changes in the
economy and their impact on the
labor force are changing the nature of
services demanded. This creates
opportunities in a market that is
overall declining. While the demand
for full-day pre-school and day care is
declining due to a decrease in
preschool age children and increased
unemployment particularly among
women, the demand for specialized
services and training is rising.

The second reason is that women with
young children who wish to work
must either have adequate child care
facilities, or an at home family
member who can care for her child
while she is working. A woman who
cannot find someone to care for her
child during working hours cannot
work outside the home. While the
decline in child care facilities is not
forcing women out of the workforce,
the lack of adequate child care/pre-
school facilities will keep women
from being able to re-enter the
workforce.

The principal opportunities for private
sector investment in child care are in
taking over enterprise centers that are
unable to operate on factory generated
surplus and in providing new services
like after work care, part-time and
drop-in care, and special classes for
children and parents.

Submitted by: Barbara Brown,
Sector Specialist/OTAPS/Small
Business











Developing 'Linkages' to Strengthen Business Activities


Organizations that program for small
business development typically
provide credit, business skills training
or one-on-one technical assistance.
While all of these are valuable inputs
into business development, one area
often overlooked, is that of "develop-
ing linkages" either informational or
marketing both vertically and
horizontally to strengthen sustain-
able marketing opportunities and
improve profitability.

One South African credit organiza-
tion, which provides credit to several
hundred women engaged in small
scale business activities, was ap-
proached by a large company to get a
list of program participants who might
be interested in long-term contracts
for tailoring employees' uniforms.
When the organization was unable to
produce a list, or even the name of
one business who could benefit from
this contract the opportunity was lost.
In a similar organization in Kenya,
staff indicated that opportunities were
lost because there was no mechanism
for facilitating information exchange
either amongst resource organizations
and businesses or between businesses
for marketing or sourcing inputs.
Neither organization recognized that
increasing information for marketing
and input linkages was a way of
stimulating business development,
increasing their client base and
strengthening their clients' ability to
repay loans.

In many countries, PCVs work with
the clients of these and similar
organizations. Typically, training and
technical assistance is provided,
primarily in business operational
skills, marketing training is also
provided, most commonly focusing
on the "4 Ps" (product, place, price,
promotion) and less often focusing on
bigger picture issues associated with
obtaining regular inputs, marketing


outputs by developing vertical and
horizontal linkages and looking for
value-added opportunities.

Understanding the bigger picture
issues is especially important in
working with women because they
tend to be clustered in service and
retail firms often operating out of
their homes, and likely to be engaged
in a number of economic activities at
once. This type of diversified
portfolio can stretch too thinly a
woman's limited time, and manage-
rial and financial resources, thereby
hampering the profitability of all
enterprises of the portfolio. The
result is that they often get trapped
into a strategy of limited income.
Men, on the other hand, tend to be the
ones engaged in small-scale "value-
added" manufacturing, which offers
more opportunity for specialization
and developing a sustainable busi-
ness.

Training and technical assistance
provided to businesses and resource
organizations can be enhanced
through a greater understanding of the
strata of businesses, their characteris-
tics, and interventions that are more
likely to contribute to a bigger-picture
economic development strategy.

The chart on the following two pages
serves as a general tool for determin-
ing assistance.










BUSINESS STRATA
Characteristics, Possible Linkages and
Intervention
INCOME-GENERATING ACTIVITIES


Characteristics

These activities are more intended to generate small
sums of cash either for an explicit purpose or as a
survival strategy. Persons in these activities are
likely to be part of a women's group or individuals
who have little, if any, opportunity for generating
needed monies. Individuals at this level are likely to
take a job if one is available. Therefore, persons in
this group are less likely to expect that the income-
generating activity will be on-going. Their primary
interest is in selling what they are producing.

These activities are likely to be home-based and lack
any formal structure. Individuals are likely to be
hawkers or vendors and "on-sell" rather than produce
unless its handicrafts. Identification of markets is
likely to be a problem as is quality control where
there is some sort of production.

Persons in these groups are more likely to have
limited literacy and numeracy skills and few years of
education.


Possible Linkages and Interventions


The greatest assistance to this strata is to identify
and develop consistent markets. For example, if
a women's group is engaged in handicraft
production, then a variety of retail shops or
markets should be identified before an
overproduction occurs where items can be
sold on a regular basis. Some informal arrange-
ment must be in place that gets the production to
the marketplace on a regular basis.

Women at this level of business activity are most
likely to benefit by engaging in some "value
added" activity based on what they already do.
For example, if they are farmers, they are more
likely to gain from drying and packaging fruit,
etc. Before encouraging production in any area,
there should be some idea of a consistent market
and a means to get the product there. Handicraft
production, in general, should be avoided
because it tends to be labor-intensive with little
payoff.


Business skills training for this strata is less
effective than for micro-enterprises on up the
strata. If training is provided, persons at this
level are most likely to benefit from training in a
specific production area, such as drying fruit or
some other related activity.

MICRO/INCOME GENERATING


Characteristics

These activities are most likely still to be included in
the informal sector and likely to be home-based
activities. They may be family-run and likely include
one to five persons. Some of the activities are likely
to be on-going and others will be intermittent, such as
some sort of agricultural production. Persons in this
strata are likely to be women with limited levels of
education. The persons in this group may or may not
be entrepreneurial. Some in this group may still take
a job as a first choice if offered. Others in this group
will want to remain with microbusinesses, informally
and at home and not grow into a more formalized
business.


SPossible Linkages and Interventions


Since persons in this strata are likely to want to
remain smaller and informal, this group can best
be served by identifying and developing consis-
tent markets for their products. Selling to
wholesalers might be explored as an alternative
to direct sales. Quality control issues should be
addressed through technical assistance or
training. If business skills training is offered, it
should be very rudimentary and specific to the
business activity. These persons should be
assisted in identifying inputs in a cost effective
manner. For example, common at this level is
individual purchase of supplies which are bought
at the full retail price and often obtained by the
individual traveling some distance to purchase a
small quantity. The main issue to remember in
working with this strata is to begin with develop-
ing consistent markets, then reducing costs of
inputs before worrying about training for internal
operations, unless it is quality control.











SMALL/MICRO


Characteristics

From this strata, on-going businesses are likely to
emerge and the owners are likely to be more
entrepreneurial. These could be a mix of home-
based businesses or ones with fixed workshops.
They may be formal or informal sector. The
number of persons is likely to range from one to
five. While these businesses may want to grow
financially, they may not want to grow in numbers
of employees. At this level, it is likely there will be
a broader mix of businesses, although women are
still likely to be clustered in retail and service.
Levels of education and literacy are likely to be
limited.


Possible Linkages and Interventions

With this group, there is a greater opportunity to
look at market linkages both horizontally and
vertically. Value-added and "specialization"
opportunities should be explored. Business skills
training at this level becomes more relevant as long
as it directly pertains to the operations of that
specific business. Quality control issues are likely
to remain a problem, especially if this business
wants to market to larger companies.


SMALL


MEDIUM AND LARGE


This size business is a likely candidate for purchas-
ing from the smaller businesses because its de-
mands for quantity and quality may be such that the
smaller suppliers can provide adequate inputs.
Value-added activities and specialization should be
explored and encouraged where feasible. Horizon-
tal and vertical linkages should be encouraged to the
extent possible. Feasibility studies should be
conducted for new businesses and new product
lines. This level of business is more likely to
benefit from training for the business owners) and
employees. The training at this level should include
management as well as business operational skills.



Possible Linkages

The largest firms may offer opportunities for
subcontracting or direct sales. Large companies
should be explored to determine if they have a list
of items which they subcontract for or purchase on
a regular basis; everything from uniforms to
buckets. Medium-sized firms should be contacted
for direct sales, or purchase of consistent inputs.
Wholesale opportunities should also be explored.
The larger companies should be viewed as ones in
which "vertical or horizontal" integration could
occur. For the small company, this would mean
specializing in one or more items needed by the
larger compaines.


Selected References:


Eigen, Hohanna, "Assistance to
Women's Businesses Evaluating
Options," in Small Enterprise
Development, Vol. 3, No. 4, Decem-
ber '92.
Downing, Jeanne, "Gender and the


Growth of Microenterprises, "in
Small Enterprise Development, Vol.
2, No. 1, March '91.
Edgecomb, Elaine L., Monitoring &
Evaluating Small Business Proiects:
A Step by Step Guide. Facilitator's


Manual, PACT (1988).

Submitted by: Susan Reynolds, Sector
Speicalist/OTAPS/Small Business


Characteristics

Businesses in this strata are likely to be on-going,
formal sector businesses with fixed workshops that
would like to grow financially and in numbers of
employees. They may have up to 10 or 15 employ-
ees. Persons operating these businesses are likely to
have at least some secondary education if not more.
It is more likely that some small scale manufactur-
ing businesses will be at this level.


Businesses in this strata are likely to be from 15 to
50+ employees depending upon the country. These
businesses will be more formal, complex, bigger
and may be internally differentiated enterprises.
These businesses are more likely to be involved in
domestic and export markets.


Possible Linkages and Interventions










Grameen Bank: A Micro-
LendingModel

The following article is a book review
of Participation as Process What We
Can Learn From Grameen Bank.
Bangladesh
by Andreas Fuglesang and Dale
Chandler.
This book explains in detail the
functioning of a very successful
micro- savings and loan program. It
was started in 1976 by Dr.
Muhammed Yunus in Bangladesh, a
predominantly Muslim country, one
of the poorest countries in the world.
It has a repayment rate of 98% for its
loan portfolios and continues to
expand rapidly in rural areas of
Bangladesh. In 1988, the Grameen
Bank had 248 branch offices each
servicing 50 to 60 centres located in
villages within walking distance of
the branch office. The bank continues
to expand into new villages in
Bangladesh today.
Prior to the success of the Grameen
Bank, it was believed that small loans
could not be made profitable due to
the high transactions costs and the
belief that poor people were not good
risks since they offered no collateral
in the case of default. Dr. Yunus
found a way around these constraints
to lending to the poor by creating a
system that empowered the poor to
identify good credit risks amongst
themselves. This is done through
solidarity groups of five people per
group. They select each other based
on who they know can be trusted and
who has a viable idea.
The majority of Grameen Bank
members are illiterate women. The
solidarity groups are required to put
one taka (3 US cents) into a Group
Savings Fund every week at the
weekly meeting. All members of the
group are responsible for making sure
that the loans of each of their group
members is repaid. This acts as the
substitute collateral or guarantee in
the system. The members have an
incentive to make sure that only good
loans are made and if something goes
wrong, they together resolve the
problem so that the loan can be
repaid. For instance, one woman died
shortly after buying a cow with her
loan. The other solidarity group
members decided to sell the cow and
make the loan payments with the
capital received. In this way, the


group members' participation in the
process at all levels is what has
helped the system to be so successful.
In order to receive a loan, candidates
must participate in the group training
program which is a minimum of
seven days of continuous instruction
in which they are explained the
functioning of the bank and the roles
and responsibilities of the various
players; area visits to operating
centres are conducted; and primary
health care is discussed. Later
meetings and training focus on other
aspects of the member's development,
such as self-esteem building, manage-
ment training, improved nutrition and
child care practices. In this sense, the
Grameen Bank takes a holistic
approach to development. In 1984,
100 women centre chiefs created the
"Sixteen Decisions" rules which all
new members must agree to abide.
These are discussed and recited in
weekly meetings. The Grameen Bank
has even been involved with present-
ing new production processes and
appropriate technologies for income
generating activities that people could
start with the loans.

The whole system is extremely
decentralized, allowing members and
branch managers much autonomy and
influence in making improvements in
the system. The system uses positive
reinforcement and encouragement in
all aspects of its functioning. Branch
managers are entitled to up to 10% of
the profits through an incentive
system to run the bank well. Mem-
bers are allowed bigger loans with
each successful repayment.
How has this system been successful?
Studies have shown that participation
in Grameen Bank has helped many
members, especially women, to move
themselves out from underneath the
poverty line. The system also
reinforces positive behaviours in all
aspects of development. The partici-
pants' increased income goes towards
improved family nutrition, health, and
education. One study even showed
that women who are members of
Grameen Bank are less likely to
become pregnant than members of
another micro-credit program that
does not include the training sessions
and are much less likely to become
pregnant than women who don't
participate in any savings or credit
program. This indicates that partici-
pation helps women to make the
necessary shift in focus from the


short-term to the long-term, which
enhances their chances of personal
development.
The Grameen Bank specifically
targets the poorest of the poor m its
lending. By doing this, it is not in
direct competition with other banks in
Bangladesh. They have a policy of
not lending to any of the pre-existing
clients of the formal financial
institutions. When going into a new
village, the Grameen Bank employee
is instructed to seek out the poorest
person in the village first to begin
their lending operations.
At a recent conference on World
Hunger in Washington, D.C., Dr.
Yunus explained how the solidarity
group system worked to insure
repayment. First, before issuing a
loan, they make sure that the loan
recipient has the conditions necessary
to be able to employ the loan cor-
rectly, both technically and physi-
cally. For example, if a woman
applied for a loan to fatten cows, they
would check to see whether she had
ever done that work before and to see
if she had a cow shed. Then, after the
loan is disbursed, they check to make
sure it is spent as planned.
Dr. Yunus explained that members
are encouraged to take a positive
approach to dealing with a potential
loan default. For example, if one of
the group members is late on a loan
payment, the other members assume
that the member has a problem that
has impeded her ability to pay. The
other members go to her house to see
what the problem is and how they can
help. It may be that the goat she used
the loan to buy has died. The other
members may help her to find some
other way to make income to repay
the loan or may even help her turn
that loan into a longer term loan and
issue another short-term one so she
can continue to earn an income and
make payments. Each member has an
incentive to repay becausehis or her
ability to receive a new loan is
contingent upon successful repay-
ments of other members.

The average loan is $60. The average
repayment term for a loan used to
generate income is one year, to be
paid in 50 weekly instalments. The
Bank charges 16% interest per annum
on its loans and pays 8.5% interest on
deposits. Members are encouraged to

Continued on page 17........






Africa Region
.a .I ..


First Place
"Carrying Pipes for the
Pipeline Project"
PCV Renae Adam,
Ghana



Second Place
"Women Working
Together"
PCV Emily Urquhart,
Mali






Asia and the Pacific Region


I .


i "

p' '
*_ ___ _
Ft -1
?* tiU


'

~4~f -~
\ -I
-1


First Place
"Tapa Making Demonstration"
PCV Sally Conley,
Western Samoa


Second Place
"Sharing Knowledge"
PCV Nan Shugart,
Solomon Islands


r....y-


ir
R:a


cYI --~,





Eurasia and the Middle East Region


First Place
"Collecting Fodder
For Their Cows"
PCV
Cheryl Swartz,
Morocco



Second Place
"Crystal Factory"
PCV
Steve Schneider,
Hungary





Inter America Region


First Place Second Place
"ECO Caravan" "Vegetables Were Once
PCV Amy Stephenson, Imported"
Uruguay PCV Kathleen Dowd,
Bolivia







Wavelengths Wavelengths Wavelengths


Chile

"Heavy on the women, light on
the business development-
but that's the way it really is
here!"

Inside a ruka-a windowless wooden
building with a thatched roof and a
dirt floor-is a fire, around which are
gathered 13 dark-haired and-eyed
Mapuche women for their monthly
committee business meeting. Babies
nurse blissfully from exposed breasts
and women flash toothless smiles as a
tin cup of mat6 makes its way around
the circle. Conspicuous even in this
haze am I the only blonde, the only
huinca (non-Mapuche). I drink the
boiling mat6 through the same silver
straw that has been used by the other
women, kick the chickens away from
my feet, squirm on the crude wooden
bench and realize how far I am from
the rarified blue-suited, plush atmo-
sphere of corporate America.

I am a business Volunteer in Chile
working with Casa de la Mujer
Mapuche, a cooperative of 136
Mapuche women who weave rugs,
blankets, and other textiles. Their
work is exquisite and time-consum-
ing. They spin, dye, and weave the
wool by hand, but only when they can
snatch time from their daily chores of
washing (by hand) clothes, pulling
water from the well, digging potatoes,
cleaning the house, baking bread, and
feeding the chickens, pigs, and
children. Although for some of them
the weaving is the only source of cash
income for the family, it must take
last place to all their other duties.

In the office, we also must fit real
work in amongst the necessities. We
have no support staff. The phone
rings until one of us is annoyed
enough to answer it; the duty of
traipsing down the stairs when the
doorbell summons falls upon the two
of us who aren't pregnant. Unless
one of us cleans them, the coffee cups
and spoons stay dirty, as do the
kitchen and bathroom.
There is no such thing as "women's


work," there is only work. The act of
making coffee for the socias does not
signify a demotion to sub-secretary
status. Rather, it is a reciprocation of
the hospitality the socias show us: no
visit to their farms passes without a
trip to the orchards or a snack of
homemade bread and fresh eggs.

Despite the hardships, working with
all women is refreshing. Small
children are part of everything,
clasping kittens to their chests and
giggling as they toddle about the
rukas. Socias bring their infants to
office meetings. No one gets upset
when the babies get fussy; instead,
breasts emerge discreetly and we
continue to discuss financing and new
products. Without fearing for their
jobs, my two pregnant co-workers
come in late when they have morning
sickness and meet with their mid-
wives in the middle of the work day.

We are literally and figuratively
thousands of miles from the normal
U.S. corporate practices. Little
happens here in the way I learned
from the Harvard Case Studies in
business school. But we are proving
that it is possible for the realities of
being women (and of life) to co-exist
with the necessities of business.

Submitted by: PCV Annette Mertens





Costa Rica

Redefining Women's Roles

"La Celestina" refers to the madam
of a house of ill repute, but for 15
women in Rio Celeste, Costa Rica
"Las Celstinas" has been redefined as
women choosing to take control of
their future, literally experiencing the
trials of building an enterprise from
the ground up. The name, "Las
Celestinas" springs from the color of
the sky blue river which passes
through this tropical land and gives
the town its name. The Association,
after one point five years of meetings,


planning, filing numerous financial
applications, studying, and good old
fashioned hard work are now the
proud entrepreneurs of a plantain and
yuca toasting plant.

Due to the lack of any direct market-
ing resource for traditional produce in
the northern plains of Costa Rica,
many small scale farmers are forced
into selling their produce at lower
than market prices to middlemen,
commonly known as "Chorizeros":
mini-entrepreneurs who have vehicles
and buy area produce to sell it for
higher prices outside the region. Call
it pure capitalism, or entrepreneur-
ship, the system benefits few people
without offering the opportunities
necessary for area farmers to prosper.
Recently there has been an effort to
develop new sources of access to
direct marketing planned and operated
by the same communities. Las
Celestinas was formed as a sub-group
of the local farmers association.
Their aim was to start a small
enterprise that would offer an
alternative to the local "Chorizeros."
Problems arose when their ideas were
inevitably decided unfeasible and
abandoned. For more than 10 months
Las Celestinas diligently planned the
toasting plant. What was meant to be
an earnest attempt at community
development was patronized but not
taken too seriously. Here the con-
frontation between traditional and
emerging women's roles in Costa
Rica began. Though being silently
ridiculed and receiving minimum
support from their umbrella organiza-
tion, Las Celestinas have persevered.

My first meeting with Las Celestinas
was January 13, 1993 just one week
before my invocation as a Volunteer.
What I encountered was a determined
group of women eager to start their
own business yet lacking the self
confidence and skills to accomplish
their goals. For the past year I've
worked with them to develop their
self-confidence and heighten their
motivation. The changes I've
witnessed reflect hidden strengths.
We just had to find them.










By May 1993, Las Celestinas had
officially adopted their name and
started the process that in December
1993 liberated the group from the
farmers association and legally
banded them as one. This milestone
completed the circle and legitimized
their dream.

In less than one month the
"Asociaci6n de Mujeres Las
Celestinas" will begin buying and
processing more than 20,000 plan-
tains and yuca. They've provided
training and formed friendships
amongst 15 women, which will
provide a needed source of income for
these women, and en ables them to
offer premium market prices to area
farmers where none were received
before.

When I first began working with this
group I wanted to develop more group
cohesiveness by giving them a banner
to work under, so I opened discussion
about possible group names. "Las
Celestinas" was chosen. As the
saying goes "ignorance is bliss" and
we reveled in the name. After all,
they are from Rio Celeste and this
was a catchy title. Unfortunately,
after some subtle hints and one
dictionary definition later we were
forced to reanalyze the name. After
some healthy debate and many
allayed doubts they decided the name
stays. It seems fitting (as skewred
logic goes) that their name is com-
monly associated with a "Woman in
charge" no matter her legal standing.
It's a genuine mockery of one
traditional role these women will
never need to know. Today, "Las
Celestinas" are an example of female
empowerment, in an epoc of chang-
ing women's roles and values. This
redefining of an "old professional"
term seems to fit.

Submitted by: PCV Michael E. Toops


Lithuania

During the Soviet occupation,


Lithuanians, in general, didn't worry
about finding jobs or being unem-
ployed since there was virtually full
employment. University graduates
were assigned jobs. But indepen-
dence has brought about drastic
changes. In conversations with young
women from secondary schools
through universities, on the subject of
their future, the usual response is a
shrug, blank stare of "I don't know."
There are no guidance counselors or
placement offices, and parents lack
information. So where can these
young women go for advice and
assistance? Their country is in flux
and the guidelines are constantly
changing.

Some Peace Corps Volunteers are
teaching English through practical
writing applications, such as resumes
and cover letters, and oral proficiency
through interviewing. But what about
career/life choices? In response to
this problem, the three PCVs in
Panevezys and a Volunteer from the
U.S. organization "Faith in Action,"
held a Career Day For Women in
November 1993. Goals were to
create a forum to meet local profes-
sional women in various careers and
to discuss choices for Lithuanian
women. Career Day was a success.

What did we do? We invited local
women to speak about their careers in
business, fine arts, education, health,
home management, cosmetology and
banking. We encouraged the 100
participants to ask questions. We
divided the participants into discus-
sion groups on the topics of self-
esteem and self-responsibility and had
recorders report back to the whole
audience. We fed them a nutritious
lunch. And we stayed out of the
limelight. The Americans were
behind-the-scenes planners and
facilitators and the day ran smoothly.
In essence, Career Day was con-
ducted in Lithuanian by Lithuanians
for Lithuanians. The participants
completed evaluation forms and gave
the program an overall rating of 4.8
(on a 1-5 scale) with 100% comment-
ing they definitely wanted another
program very soon.


If you are interested in holding a
similar program in your city/country
and want more information, we've
completed a very detailed report with
program and promotional ideas,
speaker and recorder guidelines, costs
and other logistics. Please contact
any of us at the PC office: Marilyn
Ambrose, Heidi Jack, Damon Stewart
at Traku 9/1, Room 201, Vilnius
2001, Lithuania.





Costa Rica
Something I love, turned into money!

I never thought that doing something I
love, something I've done almost my
entire life, (fishing) could be turned
into an income generating project for
a group of women living in the campo
of Costa Rica.

As in most Latin American countries,
life for women in Costa Rica can be
very mundane. Most of every day is
spent cooking, cleaning, and looking
after the kids. There is little time or
opportunity for other activities.

Living in Northeastern Costa Rica,
close to the Caribbean Coast, where
thousands of Americans come every
year to fish for Snook (Calba), I
thought was an opportunity for the
women of Herediana, a nearby
community, to earn some extra
income by making lead-head jigs
(fishing lures) out of locally available
materials.

When I began working with this
group of four women, they had been
together for over a year and working
with another Volunteer looking for a
viable project that could earn them
and their families some extra income.
So far, they had been unsuccessful.
After discussing my idea with the
group, they decided to try it.

Through contacts in the U.S., we
ordered jig molds and how to books.










Now, after several fund raising
projects and waiting for packages in
customs, the women have started
producing jigs. They are also talking
to potential customers about orders.
Eventually, they hope to produce
about 2,000 jigs per year.

Submitted by: PCV Dodson
Thompson (Dee)




Bolivia

On January 17 through February 3,
WID consultant Susana de Silva
facilitated workshops here in three of
the regional capitals. The following
is a translated version of a newspaper
article.

Peace Corps Hosts Workshop In
Favor of Women and Family

Tarija, 5(PRESENCIA). Peace Corps
Bolivia hosted last week in this city a
workshop entitled: "Women and
Family; Methodology of Work and
Integration." The purpose of the
workshop was to collaborate with the
work of women in different areas and
better their activities with the use of
participative techniques. Themes of
the workshop included: Adult
Education Role of the Facilitator,
Extension Techniques and the
Development of Skills to work as
community promoters; Women and
Family, and Women in the Commu-
nity with an introduction to the
planning of small community
projects.
The workshop, which took place in
the Hotel Los Ceibos, was conducted
by Susana Pico de Silva, a WID
Consultant from Ecuador and the
Peace Corps Volunteer, Tamara
Tyler.

By an agreement with the Govern-
ment of Bolivia, the Peace Corps has
approximately 100 Volunteers
working in different institutions here.
This North American entity works
with local and national projects,
providing human resources in the
form of Volunteers who work as
facilitators in the development
process assisting institutions accord-
ing to their needs in technical areas


especially in the fields of small
business and cooperatives, soil
conservation and environmental
education, agriculture extension and
rural sanitation.



Zimbabwe

The Struggle To Acjoeve a Voice

At Gomoguru Secondary the condi-
tions are exceedingly poor (a descrip-
tion which I'm certain fits all of our
schools). To illustrate this, here is
what my Form 1 class must face
everyday: Two very broken desks-
for the whole class of 35 students-
broken windows, very few textbooks,
no exercise books, no floor to speak
of, no door to speak of, no chalkboard
to speak of, and a teacher whose eyes
must betray and reflect, unavoidably,
daily, the misery witnessed in the
lives of his students. This is espe-
cially true for those students seated on
the ground, seated in the dirt, huddled
in the corer, huddled in silence-in
the back of the room.

Those students are always, and
regrettably, the girls. Those students
who ask, without asking, for us to
believe in them so that they might
believe in themselves.

So in response to this silent request, I
decided to try to implement what I
deemed a fair solution: on one day the
boys world occupy the "privileged
position", and on the next day, the
girls got their turn. The students'
responses: the girls hesitated to move
even an inch from their comer, and
the boys refused to do as much from
their seats.

When Gladys came out for site visit,
then, I felt it was high time for both
the girls and the boys to hear, not only
me talking about respect for girls (for
their educations and for their lives),
but also to hear and to see a woman
speaking on these subjects.

In the afternoon, Gladys and I and the
girls and the boys all went outside and
sat under a tree. For one hour Gladys
talked, asking the girls what they
wanted to be when they grew up. The
girls' responses were quite telling: so


many of them said they wanted to be
her-this woman-although they
admitted that they didn't know who
she was or exactly what it was that
she did. All they seemed to know, in
all that they didn't say, was that here,
standing before them, was a woman
who had achieved something for
herself. She clearly had respect for
herself; she thought for herself; she
spoke for herself. And they-these
girls-could do all these things, too,
have all these things, too, be all these
things, too, if only they tried.
And the boys listened.
And I watched.
And Gladys spoke some
more.
And when Gladys showed the
students her business card, letting
them know who she was and what
exactly it was that she did, I caught
the look in one of the girl's eyes. And
this time it was not a look of misery,
of desperation, but of hope. And deep
down, in this girl's eyes, I could see
her struggling for air. And deep
down, I could see that no one wanted
anything more than to be what she
herself chose to be. And I thought to
myself: "Who should deny anyone
something that deeply yearned for?
Who should deny anyone that right?"

And the next day in class, as this
same young girl sat up front, in one of
the two very broken desks, her voice
betrayed and reflected that which I
had been privileged enough to see in
her eyes the day before. Trying to
answer one of my questions, she
spoke, so softly that I could barely
hear her. So softly, almost impercep-
tibly. So softly.
But she found her voice.
And she spoke.
Submitted by: PCV Daniel Crose
*Gladys is Gladys Sithole, APCD
Education.








International Womens Day Celebrations:


Ecuador
Women in Development Activity
The Peace Corps/Ecuador committee
of Women in Development has
produced a radio program in celebra-
tion of International Women's Day.
The purpose of this project is to raise
the level of in-country awareness of
International Women s Day and the
contributions made by Ecuadorian
women while taking advantage of a
communication media widely
available to Ecuadorians and Peace
Corps Volunteers.
This Spanish language program for
radio is titled "Mu eresEn Acci6n"
(Women in Action). It is composed
of five different mini-programs. Each
five to seven minute mini-program
consists of a portion of history of
International Women's Day and an
interview of an Ecuadorian woman.
The women were nominated and
interviewed by PCVs. The interviews
represent women working and living
in various situations and geographical
areas in Ecuador. The interviews
consist of open-ended questions
concerning their lives, work and
hopes for the future as Ecuadorian
citizens and as women. Male and
female Ecuadorian voices and
Ecuadorian folk music are used. The
program is designed for radio
broadcast on five consecutive days
using a different mini-program daily.
The program was funded by WID/
OTAPS and Peace Corps Ecuador.
The five-person subcommittee of the
Peace Corps/Ecuador Women in
Development committee conducted
the interviews and organized the
program script. The editing and
copying of the program was done by a
PCV's counterpart agency for a
reasonable fee. Additional funds
were budgeted for ten Women in
Development committee representa-
tives to host a local information fair
or similar event to highlight Interna-
tional Women's Day and/or Women
in Development which could be done
in conjunction with the broadcast of
"Mujeres En Acci6n."
The use of this program was offered
to all Ecuador PCVs although the
majority taking advantage of this
opportunity were Women in Develop-
ment committee members. The
program was aired on 13 different
radio stations in 11 different sites in
Ecuador. Most radio stations did not
charge for this service and those that
did charged a reduced fee. Two


PCVs took advantage of the budget
for a related fair or activity.
All cassette copies are kept for check-
out in the Women in Development
resource office. This tape can be used
for future International Women's Day
celebrations or as a focus point for
any other Women in Development
activities. Hopefully next year more
PCVs will take advantage of this tape.
Though a lot of work, the Women in
Development committee is pleased
with the project activity.
Submitted by: PCV Rhonda Bekker




Senegal

Hello, from WID Senegal! We are
happy to inform you that our first
efforts to celebrate International
Women's Day were successful and
we believe a strong precedent has
been set. Our theme for the day was
"Senegalese Women and Art" and
featured an arts and crafts exhibition
and sale. We invited six female
artisans from villages to come to
Dakar in order to discuss, display and
sell their work pottery, embroidery
and basketry. The morning program
involved a discussion of the processes
involved in the women's crafts, how
they learned them, and the problems
they have in marketing and selling
their works. Once the women
overcame their shyness, it was very
productive and interesting. The rest
of the day was dedicated to buying
and selling. The atmosphere was very
pleasant and we received positive
feedback from all sides.



Cape Verde
Summary of Women's History Month
Project
Women's History Month Photo
During the month of March photo-
graphs of Cape Verdean women
active in Education and Health,
Business, Government and Culture
were featured outside of the Peace
Corps Office in Praia, Cape Verde.
The photographs captured the essence
of the role Cape Verdean women are
playing in the development of their
nation and were accompanied by


captions, poems, etc. in honor of their
hard work. The photographs included
women from nearly every island in
Cape Verde hosting Peace Corps
presently and will be kept in the
archives of the Peace Corps office for
future use.
Solidarity Luncheon
The solidarity luncheon was an
attempt to thank the more than 25
Cape Verdeans that contributed in any
way to the events that took place
during the month of March. The
wives of various establishment
owners that made contributions in the
form of discounts or donations were
invited to be appreciated along with
the women involved in the Interna-
tional Women's Day panel discus-
sion, women involved in securing
resources and implementing the
Health Fair and the women commu-
nity members involved in organizing
the event for rural women. The
luncheon was exclusively female
oriented to express our connection to
one another as responsible for the
progress of women on all levels.
Whether the contribution was
personal or through a family member,
it was established that all the women
were affecting their surroundings in a
positive way.
International Women's Day Forum
The International Women's Day
Forum was an educational event
geared toward teenage girls in the two
largest high schools m Praia, Cape
Verde. e event was held on the
evening of International Women's
Day and involved women on a panel
to discuss the progress of Cape
Verdean women m vanous areas of
interest. The women were also
responsible for providing information
to those represented as well as
making available new options open to
women as a result of their progress in
the development of Cape Verde.
Women's Health Fair
The Women's Health Fair was geared
toward adult women in Praia and the
surrounding area and increasing their
awareness of the importance of
physical and mental health. The first
part of the program provided nearly a
full day of displays featuring various
forms of information on issues
affecting women's health care in
Cape Verde today AIDS, family
planning, breast cancer and self-
examinations, mental health, diet and
nutrition, etc. The second part of the
program provided an aerobics class
where instructors led an audience of
nearly 25e women in exercises.
There were also opportunities to











register for these classes through
Island Gym, Inc.
Interior Women's Day
The Interior Women's Day event was
a cultural one geared toward the
elderly women and girl children of the
rural zones throughout Santiago. The
event hosted more than two-hundred
members of three to four rural
communities around Sao Domingos.
The event was split into two parts.
The first half of the day provided
games and face-painting for children
and small candy prizes and cookies
were given as rewards. The second
half of the day featured various forms
of entertainment featuring community
youth groups, dance groups, music
ands, and even a national radio
figure, Nho Puchim, who came out
and told a few stories to the elderly
and children. The event ended with
traditional Cape Verdean foods
cooked by women in the community
and served to all of the more than 100
participants in the cultural perfor-
mances and in organizing the event.
National Cape Verdean Women's
SDa
OMCV celebrated its Thirteenth
Annual national Cape Verdean
Women's Day in the Parque Cinco de
Julho this year. The event was a
cultural one that focused on many of
the same issues that Interior Women's
Day featured but was geared toward
urban areas. I invited Peace Corps
Volunteers to aid in providing support
to the event and was joined by one
other Volunteer in Praia, Deborah
Jefferson, in attending the event. The
event, for the organization, was a
huge success and I learned a lot from
working with the women. I encour-
age Peace Corps Cape Verde to keep
its eyes focused on this group and this
event for the same interaction with
other Volunteers in the future.

Submitted by: PCV Yolanda
Lewis



Portland, Oregon

Bringing The World Back Home
International Women's Day 1994
Well over a thousand women,
children and men celebrated Interna-
tional Women's Day (IWD) on
Sunday March 6, 1994 at an all, day-
event in Portland, Oregon. At IWD
there were musical and theatrical
performances by women, several
women vendors of good food,


displays by craftswomen, women
oriented community organizations'
information tables, workshops and
panel discussions on topics relevant to
women. It was a day for recognizing
the work, words, struggles and
accomplishments of women every-
where. It was a day for everyone.
The Returned Peace Corps Volunteers
of Portland/Oregon and the Portland
State University Peace Corps Repre-
sentative sponsored a Peace Corps
Information Table. Many people
passed by the table with comments
ike, "Is Peace Corps still around"?;
"I always wanted to join the Peace
Corps, but I'm not so young any-
more."; "My friend is in the Peace
Corps in...". The RPCVs
"womaning" the table were able to
respond enthusiastically that Peace
Corps is alive and well and open to all
qualified adults with no upper age
limit.
More than recruiting future Volun-
teers, we were able to share with
people our perspectives of women's
lives in other countries. We displayed
photographs of women working,
singing, learning and living. We
showed crafts made by women in the
countries we served. The Peace
Corps Washington WID Office gave
us several issues of "The Exchange"
and WID brochures to distribute. By
the end of the day, there were none
left. IWD participants proved to be
an enthusiastic audience which made
the day a lot of fun.
I will always have fond memories of
International Women's Day celebra-
tions in Benin when we had role
reversals, essay contests in schools,
eating, village parades, singing,
workshops for women-run coopera-
tives/businesses, dancing. Fortu-
nately, I have been able to continue
celebrating IWD at "home." The
celebration isn't much different here
in America. There is more electrical
equipment and the food isn't so spicy,
but it is still a day for women to
celebrate women. Hopefully, it
always will be.
Submitted by: RPCV Jessica Duke,
Benin/Malawi


Grameen Bank: Continued from
page 8.
deposit individual savings into the
bank as well, but they are not manda-
tory.
The Grameen Bank also offers


housing loans, since the majority of
their beneficiaries are landless. The
Bank usually will not make a house
loan until the centre has had two years
successful borrowing experience.
These loans are longer term (up to 10
years) and larger amounts. Five
percent of each loan is taken out and
put into the Group Fund. The Group
Fund acts as a solidarity group's own
little bank. It protects the members
from having to resort to a money-
lender when they need small amounts
of money quickly. All members of
the group must consent to the terms
and conditions of such uses of the
Group Fund.
There is also a Children's Welfare
Fund in which members are required
to deposit one taka per week. At first,
the money is used for building or
making arrangements for a modest
school room also to be used for
holding the centre's weekly meetings.
Later, the money is used for
children's small income generating
activities to aid in their continuing
education.
The Grameen Bank has institutional-
ized a subjective monitoring and
evaluation method into its system by
requiring bank workers to submit
short descriptions of experiences and/
or lessons learned as part of the
monthly report. This information is
disseminated in a monthly newsletter
for all bank workers to read.
The most important lesson to be
learned from the Grameen Bank's
success at achieving development is
that it is successful because it actively
involves poor women in the decision-
making and management process.
The second most important lesson of
the Grameen Bank is that it takes a
holistic approach to development,
taking into account the issues of all
sectors including small business
development, health, education, and
natural resource management.
Finally, it makes special efforts to
target and address the specific
concerns of women and youth who
are increasingly the greatest propor-
tion of the world's poor.
Note: This book can be ordered for
In-Country Resource Centers from
ICE. If you are interested in reading
this book, please contact your In-
Country Resource Center and ask
them to order it.
Submitted by: Anita Campion,
APCD/ Small Business, Peace Corps
Mali







Resources Resources Resources Resources


Publications


Both the ICE staff and the sector
specialists in Washington attempt to
identify publications which have
broad applicability for PCVs around
the world. If you see a publication
described which has the right topics
for you, don't discard it as a resource
because it is about another part of the
world. The technical and training
principles can most likely be adapted
for your circumstances if you use
your special understanding of the
needs and values of the women with
whom you work. For example, the
people with whom you work may be
university educated urban women, but
they may have no past positive
experiences working and learning in
groups. Activities which might be
designed for rural illiterate women
might still be useful in furthering the
group process, if they are adapted to
your group's particular needs. The
same is true, of course, for similar
needs but different cultures. You can
make the adaptation to fit your special
circumstances. Please check with
your In-Country Resource Center first
to see if the publication is available
in-country. If not, write to the nICE
folks here in Peace Corps/Washing-
ton.

SB092 Marketing Strategy: Train-
ing Activities for Entrepreneurs by
Suzanne Kindervatter, et al.
examines the problems of women
entrepreneurs in developing small
businesses. This is a very useful
training guide for both experienced
trainers and extension workers as well
as development programmers. Also
edited by Suzanne Kindervatter is
SB104 Doing a Feasibility Study:
Training Activities for Starting or
Reviewing a Small Business, which
offers a step-by-step analysis of
conducting a feasibility study and


how to take a group through such a
process. Both of these publications
are also available in Spanish and
French. SB156 Faidika! Business
Training for Women's Groups: The
Tototo Way is a favorite training
resource for Business specialist Susan
Reynolds, author of the article on
business in this edition of The
Exchange. This publication should
not be overlooked because it seems
like the frame of reference is not your
hemisphere or your country. This has
very useful information and training
exercises.

WD036 Market Women's Coopera-
tives: Giving Women Credit by
Judith Bruce is an examination of
the establishment of a savings and
loan cooperative for market women. It
looks in great detail at specific factors
which led to the success of the project
and identifies issues to be considered
by others interested in undertaking
such an effort. WD038 The Markala
Cooperative: A New Approach to
Traditional Economic Roles by
Susan Coughman and N'diaye
Thiam also examines an attempt to
organize a women's cooperative, this
time a cooperative business. The
Markala Cooperative discusses
various problems and offers possible
solutions for others who may under-
take such an effort.


Most development experts agree that
non-farm income sources must be
developed in order to address the
issue of rural poverty. SB052 Black-
smith, Baker, Roofing-Sheet
Maker...Employment for Rural
Women in Developing Countries by
Marilyn Carr looks at more than 50
case studies of the experiences of
women who have implemented


income-generating projects in both
traditional and non-traditional fields
for women. WD002 Hanover Street:
An Experiment to Train Women in
Welding and Carpentry by Peggy
Antrobus examines an urban
vocational education project in
Jamaica. This is a more in-depth look
at the project which is also described
in the videotape The Women's
Construction Collective of Jamaica
available through ICE or the WID
Office. Issues related to training,
candidate selection and project
expansion are looked at in some detail
in Hanover Street, making this short
publication a thought-provoking
publication for anyone working with a
community-based training program
which might be looking to expand. It
certainly has interesting insights into
some of the circumstances which
promote successful vocational
training interventions. R087 Income
Generation and Money Manage-
ment by Sheila Reed is a very useful,
hands-on manual for training women
entrepreneurs. Written by a PCV,
there is background information and
discussion of issues to be considered
as well as detailed lesson plans to be
used in training sessions. WD102
Women and Money in the Pacific:
Income Generating Projects for
Women by Mary Dickie is a very
useful publication, applicable far
beyond the Pacific. This outlines ILO
(International Labor Organization)
efforts to develop cash-producing
projects for women.











Information


The Forum for African Women
Educationalists, a new NGO concen-
trating on policy development to
support girls' education, provides a
forum for debate on educational
issues and funds projects to improve
opportunities in education for girls
and young women. FAWE currently
consists of 26 members, including
ministers of education and university
vice chancellors, from 22 African
countries and is registered as an NGO
in Kenya. Contact: Eddah Gachukia,
P.O. Box 21389, Nairobi.



The International Labor Organization
reports that food vendors, the majority
of whom are women, constitute 26%
of the world's growing informal
sector. In the Philippines, an esti-
mated 90% of street food businesses
are run by women. In Senegal, the
estimate is 53%. These businesses
are gaining importance for women as
unemployment continues to climb
throughout the world.



The Zhenski Innovatsionnyi Fond
(ZhIF), a new women's center in
Moscow, helps women stay current
on the latest technological develop-
ments in their fields. In cooperation
with the German Women's Fund, the
ZhIF is initiating a computer/elec-
tronic mail communications network
between women's centers in various
regions in Russia and the other states
of the former USSR. For informa-
tion: ZhIF, c/o Seffi Engert, ulitsa
Fersmana 1/74 117312 Moscow,
Russia. Tel: 931-31-23.


FEMED, a newsletter on women's
education in Africa, was launched in
October 1993 with an impressive list
of announcements about research,
organizations, and conferences
concerning education of girls and
women. FEMED is produced by the
Working Group on Female Participa-
tion of the Donors to African Educa-
tion. Contact: Katherine Namaddu,
The Rockefeller Foundation, P.O.
Box 47543, Nairobi, Kenya. Tel:
254-2-228 061. Fax 254-2-228 840.



The Global Fund for Women's Spring
1994 grants include:


Daughters' Education Program. Ciane
Rai. Thailand

In the villages of Thailand, many
families face economic crisis because
of debt and landlessness. Some
parents are convinced that selling
their daughters into prostitution is the
only solution to their financial
problems. The Daughters' Education
Program is committed to informing
and empowering girls who are at risk
of being sold to brothel agents. The
organization runs support programs
for at-risk 8-18 year old girls,
providing job training opportunities in
computing, typing, sewing, agricul-
ture, etc. and organizing awareness
tours to Bangkok to show girls the
dangers of life in the slum and red-
light districts. The Daughters'
Education Program also visits family
homes to discourage the sale of girls
from taking place. The group
received $8,000 in general support.


Association of Business Women of
Uzbekistan. Tashkent. Uzbekistan

The Association of Business Women
of Uzbekistan is working hard to
"create favorable conditions for the
participation of women in the
formation of a market economy."
Committed to supporting women
entrepreneurs, the Association offers
courses in business management,
advertising, and strategic planning,
and advises women on government
regulations. In future, the Association
plans to open a small business center
with market analysis and communica-
tions facilities to serve
businesswomen's needs. The group
received $5,000 in general support.


The Global Fund for Women is a
grantmaking organization with gives
funds to seed, strengthen, and link
women's groups working for the
empowerment of women. Its work is
rooted in the belief that women's
strength and ingenuity can make a
world of difference. The Global Fund
is committed to giving flexible, timely
support to groups working on
emerging, controversial, or difficult
issues, and it is the only United States
foundation that exclusively funds
international women's rights. To
date, The Global Fund has given
away $3,302,832 in 612 grants, to 484
groups in 97 countries.

For more information about The
Global Fund for Women, please
contact Mairi Dupar, Communica-
tions Fellow. Tel: (415) 854-0420,
Fax: (415) 845-8050, Email:
gfw@igc.apc.org (Attention: Mairi).










The Exchange is published quarterly by Women in Development, Office of Training and Program Support, Peace Corps
of the United States, for distribution to Peace Corps Volunteers and Staff. All opinions expressed are those of the editor
and individual writers and not necessarily those of OTAPS or the Peace Corps.


Editor/Writer....................... ...........
Technical Assistant.........................


Betsy Davis, WID Coordinator
Rhonda Smothers, OTAPS Technician


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