Introducing Project ProfilesSeptember 05, 2008
As a kid, I didn’t spend summers in front of the TV — there was never time. If I wasn’t at 4-H or church camp, I was wading through the local creek studying crayfish with a high school science group or riding horseback through the Sierra Nevada Mountains with the Girl Scouts. These experiences not only taught me valuable lessons about science, religion, and horses but also helped me to create those invaluable sink-or-swim skills that can only be learned when you’re on your own away from home.
AAUW understands the importance of experiences like these and works to foster projects that help promote education and equity among women and girls through the Community Action Grants program, which offers both one- and two-year financial packages. During the 2007–08 academic year, 29 Community Action Grants were awarded for a total of $213,800. Projects ranged from all-girl summer science camps to computer training for homeless women and everything in between.
During my two months here at AAUW I interviewed two energetic and knowledgeable women who are both very excited about their respective projects. Roseanna Garcia, after years in the fashion industry, decided to go back to school to gain a new perspective on Latina women in fashion. In 2007 Roseanna received a Community Action Grant that has helped her spread what she learned both through her industry experience and graduate-level research to Latinas in her community. Graham Boose, a former AAUW branch president, joined up with Claire Passantino, 2005–06 Community Action grantee, to spread the program “Let’s Read Math” regionally. This education-based project fosters elementary students’ interest in math through storytelling and hands-on activities.
AAUW recognizes the power of these types of community projects in providing support for both women and girls. This series, entitled Project Profiles, will highlight some of the innovative programs nationwide that work to provide exactly this type of support.
To find a Community Action Project in your area or to learn more about applying for a Community Action Grant, visit the AAUW website.