Together Women Rise is a community of women and allies dedicated to achieving global gender equality, This year, they are celebrating their 20th anniversary with the 350 chapters that meet across the country.
“We’re having these events all over the country, but this northeast region is just a really special one,” said Barbara Collins, co-founder of Together Women Rise. “And it’s an honor to have it in Seneca Falls.”
The celebration featured speakers from the organization and showcased one of the projects the organization funds that address various issues and needs of women and girls.
“Each month we learn about a grantee that’s in a country where women and girls have few opportunities if any to thrive,” Collins said.
This month’s featured grantee is The MoonCatcher Project, which aims to help girls around the world by removing barriers related to menstruation.
“A lot of times young women don’t have access to menstrual products which prohibits them from going to school,” said Raeesa Waheed, a board member for The MoonCatcher Project. “So they regularly miss three to five days of school every 28 days which ends up being which ends up being something like 40 % of schools days over the course of the year.”
The MoonCatcher Project is based out of Schenectady, but works to help young girls in over 30 countries around the world.
“Some young women once they get their period they even stop going to school because they can’t afford the products,” Waheed said.
The project was featured during the anniversary celebration to showcase how the grant will help the project reach more young women and spread the mission of Together Women Rise.
“These reusable products are distributed to different schools to young women,” Waheed said. “And we also provide reproductive and menstruation education, a curriculum that we’ve developed, to both boys and girls.”
And by celebrating the 20th anniversary in Seneca Falls, it allowed individuals to learn more about women’s history while looking forward to their future.
“It inspires us to want to work even more and I think it gives us hope that all of the women that have gone before us and what they’ve accomplished,” Collins said. “It gives us hope that we can do the same thing and carry it forward.”