First-quarter 2012 Challenge the Gap beneficiary Unitarian Universalist Service Committee gave us this report about how they are using the funds contributed by members of Foundation Beyond Belief. Members donated $6,365 to UUSC last quarter.
“How wonderful! My warmest thanks to the members of Foundation Beyond Belief for this most generous gesture,” said Maxine Neil, director of institutional advancement for UUSC. “This contribution will be used to support our gender work in the U.S. and Guatemala.”
In the United States, two-thirds of the people who work for minimum wage are women. Even working full time, a minimum-wage job covers less than 50 percent of a family’s basic living expenses. Thus, with our partners, Let Justice Roll, a nonpartisan coalition of organizations dedicated to keeping workers out of poverty, we are working to raise the minimum wage.
We have also partnered with STITCH – Located in Guatemala City, Guatemala, STITCH is a network of women unionists, activists, and organizers that connects women in Central America and the United States so that together they are empowered to organize for economic justice.
SAAC, the Southern Alternatives Agricultural Cooperative, is a pecan cooperative in southwest Georgia that produces shelled pecans and pecan candies for sale through fair trade. SAAC is the only African American–owned pecan shelling facility in the United States — and it is run by women. The women who lead this cooperative are lifelong advocates who are determined to run a pecan-processing plant in a way that creates new business and jobs for workers, while strengthening local economies in southwest Georgia.
The above list is just three examples of the work we do in addressing the inequalities of gender. There are several other gender projects ongoing, including initiatives in Darfur, Kenya, Tanzania, and Haiti.