Women’s empowerment is something near and dear to our hearts. It can be defined as many things, but at the forefront, it’s a call to action to support women of all ages, in self-actualizing and celebrating their incredible worth.
We believe that every woman is worth it, fiercely championing self-worth and empowerment for 50 years. Every year, L’Oréal Paris honors women who go above and beyond, selflessly dedicating their time to empower others, through its signature philanthropic program, Women of Worth. Whether born out of adversity or standing up against atrocity, their passion for diverse and powerful causes is united in a singular vision — to bring the power of knowing you are “worth it” to the world.
One of our favorite ways to participate in women’s empowerment is to support organizations founded by women and women in leadership roles. Just in time for International Women’s Day, we’re naming 10 organizations to consider supporting, each one fearlessly led by the 2021 L'Oréal Paris Women of Worth honorees, below.
1. Black & Missing Foundation
Co-founded by Washington, DC-based Natalie Wilson, Black & Missing Foundation is a non-profit organization that brings awareness to missing people of color, educates the minority community on personal safety and provides vital resources to help loved ones of missing persons.
If you suspect your loved one is missing, you can use the organization's online reporting tool to add a missing person to its database. If you believe you have sighted a person who has been listed missing or within the organization’s database, you can submit an anonymous tip. Lastly, you can take part in the cause by donating to Black & Missing Foundation to advance its mission.
2. CHADS Coalition for Mental Health
The CHADS Coalition for Mental Health is a non-profit organization co-founded by St. Louis, MO-based honoree Marian McCord. It is dedicated to saving the lives of adolescents and adults 25 or younger by advancing awareness and prevention of depression and suicide.
The organization currently offers clinical counseling for students struggling with anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts, one on one social and emotional mentoring and evidence-based suicide prevention presentations. Additionally, it serves parents, educators and community members with several resources on mental health and bullying.
You can join the cause by donating or volunteering through CHADS’ website.
3. Foundation for Sustainable Families
St. Petersburg, FL-based Ashley Rhodes-Courter, LCSW, founded the Foundation for Sustainable Families, which supports low-income families who are in high-risk and high-conflict situations by creating access to mental health, educational, nutritional and other care opportunities.
Since its inception in 2013, the foundation has served hundreds of families and professionals in the Tampa Bay area by providing them with access to several resources, including educational opportunities, mental health care, food and clothing.
Get involved by donating through the website or contacting the foundation for volunteering opportunities.
4. Hope Scarves
Hope Scarves was founded in 2012 by the late Lara MacGregor. The international non-profit organization, which is based in Louisville, KY, is dedicated to collecting scarves, and stories from cancer survivors around the world and pairing them together to spread hope to others in treatment.
In the last decade, Hope Scarves has sent over 20,000 scarves to people facing cancer in every state and 29 countries across the globe. It has also helped raise more than $1.5 million to benefit cancer research. In January of this year, MacGregor passed away at age 45 from metastatic breast cancer in January.
MacGregor's organization offers numerous volunteering opportunities, such as hosting a Scarf and Story Drive. You can also make money or scarves donations for those in cancer treatment.
5. Off Their Plate
Off Their Plate is a volunteer-staffed non-profit founded by Boston-based Natalie Guo, that partners locally with minority women chefs to cook wholesome meals for their local communities. To date, it has raised more than $8.5 million to serve meals and helped more than 170 minority-led food businesses keep staff on payroll and keep their doors open.
The organization offers numerous volunteer opportunities for high school students, undergrads and more.
Founded by Potomac Falls, VA-based Pooja Chandrashekar, ProjectCSGIRLS inspires middle school girls to pursue computer science and technology through a national competition, hands-on STEM (science, technology, engineering or mathematics) workshops and mentorship programs.
Since its launch in 2013, ProjectCSGIRLS has reached more than 15,000 girls worldwide, advocated for computer science education reform as part of President Obama’s CSForAll initiative and united students, professionals and organizations in support of gender equity in STEM.
Middle school girls can participate by registering for the 2022 ProjectSCGIRLS Competition. The deadline to register is April 1, 2022, and projects will be due May 15, 2022. You can also make a donation through the organization’s website.
7. Soar Over Hate
Co-founded by New York-based Michelle Tran during the COVID-19 pandemic, Soar Over Hate combats anti-Asian hate and xenophobia by equipping Asian Americans with personal safety devices, need-based scholarships and culturally competent therapy.
The organization also encourages communist advocacy amongst youth through volunteering and need-based scholarships and offers healing from racial trauma through its Heal From Hate Therapy Fund.
Take part in fighting against Asian hate crimes by donating to Soar Over Hate’s GoFundMe fundraiser.
8. Street Team Movement, Inc.
Founded by Orlando, FL-based Briana Daniel, Street Team Movement, Inc. is focused on restoring hope to individuals impacted by homelessness by providing them with laundry and remedial aid distributed through vending machines. Since launching in 2013, the organization has washed more than 50,000 loads of laundry and distributed more than one million hygiene items to those in need.
There are many ways to take action, including making a tax-deductible donation, donating a wash, purchasing a Hygiene Vending Machine (that provides on-demand hygiene items and laundry services), restocking a machine and purchasing a feminine hygiene kit for a woman in need.
9. The Fashion Foundation
The Fashion Foundation is another non-profit organization led by a woman. Amanda Munz of New York started up the organization as a way to address sustainability within the fashion industry by selling excess fashion samples, with proceeds supporting local school children.
Thanks to proceeds raised, the Fashion Foundation has helped build an elementary school library in Brooklyn, an arts and theater program for a high school and a school playground in Harlem.
You can help support the organization by shopping for clothes and accessories on its website and making a donation.
10. The Starr Institute, Inc.
The Starr Institute, Inc. was founded by Starr Davis, an adult survivor of child sexual abuse. The organization educates, engages and empowers youth and the community about child sexual abuse and exploitation. TSI offers interactive, culturally relevant, age-appropriate workshops for youth and the adults who support them.
Since 2017, nearly 2,500 youth and adults have participated in TSI’s awareness and prevention programming. Another 600 people across 31 states and three countries have raised funds to support TSI’s efforts through an annual 5K run.
Get involved by hosting an event, volunteering or making a contribution to help youth rediscover their light and find their voice.
Edited by: Sophie Dweck
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