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Connecther Giving Guide
Winter 2014


Connecther's 2014 Giving Guide, Make the Most of "Giving Tuesday" - Your Support is Our Success!


Make your holidays more meaningful by creating positive changes in women’s lives. Use this Connecther gift guide to shop for an inspiring project to support as a gift for yourself, family, or friends. Browse Connecther Projects or support one of the featured projects below. 

It takes just 25 seconds to make your donation that could positively impact a girl's life forever!

Education for Girls

1. Educate-a-school for Three Years!

The Citizens Foundation, described above, is creating opportunities for Pakistani schoolchildren. Our new project will help support the ongoing needs of students for their entire schooling. This will allow families to send their children into TCF schools worry free rather than wondering if there will still be an opportunity from one year to the next.  We strongly believe that quality education is the only way to provide a better future for the people of Pakistan.s. For just $120, you can provide a year of schooling for a child and change his or her life forever. All donations to Educate-a-school for 3 years are being matched by the Stahl Family Foundation up to $2500!  Donate to this project here.


In Kibera, a slum that lies in the shadow of bustling Nairobi, residents have no electricity or running water, and they face rampant crime, including high rates of sexual violence against girls. Shining Hope for Communities shines a ray of light with its Kibera School for Girls. The school provides a tuition-free education to 180 of the community’s brightest girls. Your donation will help the school educate more girls—as well as fulfill its larger goal: “to produce new leaders and to lift the spirits of all of Kibera.”  Donate to this project here.


3. The Afghan Institute of Learning needs help to support children at an orphanage in Afghanistan. The institute, founded by Nobel Peace Prize nominee Sakena Yacoobi, provides eight teachers for an after-school program at the orphanage that offers tutoring in English and computers. They also provide medical assistance, immunizations, and special assistance for children with disabilities. Girls are taught sewing and boys are taught farming so that all children will have a marketable skill when they go out into the world. With your help, the Afghan Institute of Learning can offer educational support to the residents for six months!  Donate to this project here.

“My father is a laborer and my mother does washing and cleaning for our neighbors,” says Fabia, age 13, one scholarship recipient. “I was not able to pay to go to school. I am so thankful for this scholarship. This opportunity has changed my life. After I graduate, I am going to help my family and my community."


4. Hope for Senegal

Senegal has made great strides in increasing access to education in recent years. Enrollment rates in primary school rose to an impressive 92.5 percent by 2009. However, the quality of education still lags in some areas due to a shortage of trained teachers, books, and equipment. 


Hope for Senegal’s 2015 Goals provides support for one school: Lycee Malick Sy High School. With your support, we will:

  • Build bathroom facilities for the 4,000+ students at Lycée Malick Sy High School.  Preferably, sustainable or compostable toilets.
  • Continue to support the campus sustainable teaching garden.  The students run the garden with support from a Peace Corps volunteer. The goal is to use the garden as a teaching tool & eventually have it sustain itself.
  • Provide ongoing training to improve student understanding of web design and technology.  These projects are completed in collaboration with local experts and volunteers.  Donate to this project here.

Can't decide on a project to fund?  Please give to the Connecther General Fund so we can continue our important work!

Women's Empowerment

$30 Buys Embroidery Materials for One Month!

1. Sughar, Women with Wings

Sughar brings women to village centers in Pakistan, where they learn how to do traditional embroidery for the fashion industry. In the process, the women learn how to read and write and speak out against oppression and violence. Just $10 buys books for a basic education course for one woman, and $30 buys embroidery materials for a month.  Donate to this project here.


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As a young girl growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan, Benafsha Tasmim loved school. “I would put on my school uniform at night so I wouldn't be late for school,” she says. “Everyone would laugh at me.” But her school days were cut short when the Taliban came to power and shut down girls’ schools.

Staying home each day was a hard adjustment for the enthusiastic nine-year-old. “You couldn't go out, or laugh, or talk out loud,” she recalls.

That could have been Benafsha’s fate, like that of so many Afghan girls. But instead, her parents supported her dream of going to school. First they sent her to a school held secretly in her teacher’s home. When that became too dangerous, they moved the family to Pakistan so she could continue.

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Benafsha at a Fashion Show Wearing a Beautiful Afghan Dress

Thanks to an organization called Strongheart, today the vibrant 24-year-old is training to become a future leader in her country. She is working on her master’s degree at the School for International Training in Bratteleboro, Vermont thanks to the support of Connecther and Camps to Campus which provides exceptional young women from conflict and post-conflict zones with support while they pursue world-class educational opportunities. These Strongheart Fellows are able to make the life-changing leap from the challenging circumstances in their home countries to become leaders and outspoken advocates. Strongheart has been featured on Oprah, BBC, CNN, NPR, and ABC World News. Help create visionary female leaders of tomorrow.  Donate to this project here.

Maternal Health

Train 1,000 Midwives


Train 1,000 Midwives is one of our ongoing projects to help the Edna Adan Maternity Hospital (described in story below) reduce maternal and infant mortality rates in Somaliland.  The 1,000 Midwives project trains nurse-midwives to provide lifesaving health services. In a country where the prevalence of female genital mutilation increases the risk of obstructed labor, access to a trained health care worker can mean the difference between life and death. Donate to this project here.

You Funded It!

100_9464 3           A Midwife at the Edna Adan University Hospital

In Somaliland, a woman has a 1 in 12 chance of dying in childbirth. But those dangerous odds are getting better thanks to Edna Adan and the generosity of Connecther donors. Adan, whom New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristoff called “a force of nature” in her native Somaliland, used her own money to build the fledgling country’s first maternity hospital, which is saving lives of women and infants. Last year Connecther presented Adan with a check for $10,000 to train nurse-midwives, who will provide critical support for women across the country who currently have no access to health care.


Girls at The Citizen's Foundation in Pakistan

Connecther donors are also helping improve the odds for women and girls in other countries. In Pakistan, a bright young woman named Aquila Qasim could easily have been one of the 20 million school-age children who are at home or in the streets or fields instead of in school. But at age 7, she became the first person in her family to get an education when she got the opportunity to attend a school run by The Citizens Foundation.


Today she is a teacher in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Karachi—one of 250 former TCF students, all female, who teach at the foundation’s 1,000 schools. A member of the Clinton Global Initiative and winner of the 2013 Skoll Award for Social Entreprenuership, the Citizens Foundation runs widely praised schools that are open to all children regardless of faith, ethnicity, or the family's ability to pay.

Now more children like Qasim will have the hope of a bright future thanks to the generosity of Connecther donors. We recently funded $5,000 to help support TCF schools and scholarships. It’s a no-brainer that education is key to developing a stable and peaceful society, so supporting TCF’s award-winning work—and improving the odds for children—is a smart move indeed.

We count on your support to continue our work to help advance women and girls globally.  Please support us by donating to our Connecther General Fund!

Now YOU Can Fundraise for your Favorite Connecther Project!

Create Your Own Fundraising Party in 3 Simple Steps!


Help Fund Your Favorite Connecther Project By Creating Your Own Online Fundraising Party Web Page! Your online fund raising party page can include asking people to donate in place of gifts for your birthday, wedding, anniversary, marathon, dinner celebration or even just a personal occasion that you'd like to create.  Start here and start NOW!

What Makes Us Happy?

cute girls

’Tis the season to be jolly, but how many of us know what really makes us happy? Exercise and chocolate boost endorphins, but new research points to an even more enduring source: giving.

In the new book Happy Money: The Science of Happier Spending, Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Morton report on recent research that finds shows that, although we like spending money on ourselves, giving to others makes us even happier.

Dunn and her colleagues gave study participants $5 or $20 dollars bills and asked them to spend the money on themselves or on other people. That evening, the participants who spent their bills on someone else reported a significant mood boost. Other studies show that even young children feel happy when given the opportunity to give away something of theirs. We seem to be hardwired to find giving to others rewarding.

One great way to enjoy that happiness dividend this holiday season is to make a donation to Connecther. You’ll feel good knowing that you are helping to empower women to advance their lives and communities. Then sit back and reap the benefits of your happiness harvest.

Can't decide on a project to fund?  Please give to the Connecther General Fund so we can continue our important work!

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Don't forget to connect to Connecther!




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Special thanks to our fabulous Communications Specialist Elaine Robbins and all of our supporters, partners and volunteers for making it possible for us to share these these stories with you!

We are on the Huffington Post!  Check us out here.

The Girls Impact the World Film Festival, a Connecther initiative  is currently accepting student film submissions.  DEADLINE to enter is January 15, 2015. More details available at: Girls Impact the World

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Connecther is a communication and crowdfunding platform where YOU invest in projects and initiatives that support women and girls in their local communities all over the world.

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