Empowering women through survival skills

New Future Foundation Inc. and Harlem Women International sponsored a Women’s History Month forum at the United Nations Church Center in New York City recently.

The 56th Annual Commission on the Status of Women had as its theme “Rural Women.” The forum emphasized empowering women and girls through the effort to alleviate poverty by teaching them survival skills.

Queen Mother Dr. Deloris Blakely, Community Mayor of Harlem and Goodwill Ambassador to Africa delivered the main address. Maxine McCrey Montano, president of the Harlem Women’s Committee moderated the event.

Co-sponsors and guest speakers were Asha Casteberry, chairman of the International Youth Council and Farida Yesmin, NGO Partner of Bangladesh and Kristen Wayman, youth worker and Native American Women/Land rights activist.

Women representing Africa, the Caribbean, India, Mexico, America, Bangladesh, and other countries asked the speakers questions and shared their concern to empower the rural women in their country.

Hon. Theresa Freeman, State Committee Woman and district leader who was born in the rural south in America received the Sojourner Truth-Eleanor Roosevelt Award for her years of dedicated service to inspire and empower the lives of women in New York State. Jazz singer JaRon Eanes dedicated a song in honor of The Hon. Theresa Freeman.

Special thanks were given to Patreinnah Acosta Pelle, executive director of New York Foundation Inc., Harlem Women International and Melba’s Restaurant for refreshments.

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