Tanya Weinberg 202.640.6647 (W), 202.247.6610 (M)
WESTPORT, Conn. (March 18, 2011) — Impoverished women in El Salvador whose community was badly damaged by a hurricane in 2009 will have new opportunities to improve theirs and their families’ well-being though a new partnership between Walmart and Save the Children.
Save the Children announced today that it will use a $400,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation to provide new economic opportunities to up to 3,000 women in San Pedro Masahuat, which suffered extensive damage during Hurricane Ida.
“This is a tremendous opportunity to empower women in an impoverished community that was dealt a great setback by the hurricane, and that has struggled ever since to rebound,” said Gersande Chavez, Save the Children’s country director in El Salvador. She noted that the storm destroyed the property and livelihoods of many families who could not afford to lose what little they had.
“When women have access to new skills and economic opportunities, their children are more likely to be healthy and remain in school. This project represents an important investment in women, who are critical to rebuilding and strengthening their community,” Chavez said.
Save the Children plans to use the Walmart Foundation’s grant to work with 3,000 women over the next two years. The project will identify women who are recognized as community leaders and provide them with the economic, marketing and technical skills they need to start small businesses.
The women will then serve as mentors and will help other women start their own income-generating activities. Save the Children anticipates that 10,800 women and their family members will directly benefit from the project.
The Walmart-Save the Children partnership is one of six initiatives the Walmart Foundation is funding through its new Latin America Women’s Initiative, which seeks to empower women throughout Latin America.
Save the Children has worked for more than 30 years in El Salvador. It partners with families, communities, local nongovernmental organizations and the government to improve the lives of children. The organization is a recognized leader in early childhood development–including health, education and protection for children ages 0-8 and their families — in addition to livelihoods and disaster risk reduction programming. Save the Children has responded with immediate support in every large emergency that El Salvador has faced in the last 20 years.
Save the Children is the leading, independent organization that creates lasting change for children in need in the United States and around the world. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.