Zonta Club of Frankfort Presents Centennial Anniversary Grant to fund Domestic Violence Intervention and Prevention Program

Co-presidents of the Zonta Club of Frankfort in Indiana, USA, District 6, recently met with the YWCA Greater Lafayette‘s president/CEO to present the Zonta International Centennial Anniversary Grant.

The grant funded the YWCA’s Domestic Violence Intervention and Prevention Program (DVIPP), which manages an emergency shelter and advocacy center. The club co-presidents received a tour of each to see the benefits this grant provided.

The project provided phone lines and the technology to program multi-line digital phones and a projector in the meeting room of a 100-year-old house made of thick plaster. The original phone line was installed in the basement and an earlier attempt to use a wireless signal to upper floors was unsuccessful. The grant has made domestic violence advocates more accessible to victim families in crisis. The projector allows staff to show educational safety and recovery information in a classroom setting.

YWCA Greater Lafayette has been serving women and their families since 1929. Its domestic violence program was established in 1979. For more than 50 years, the program has not only kept victims safe, but also prepared them to become self-sufficient. DVIPP’s six-county service area includes Frankfort.

Photo: The lone Centennial Anniversary Grant received in District 6 was ceremoniously presented by Jeni Royalty (left) and Nancy Harshbarger (right), co-presidents of the Zonta Club of Frankfort, to Allison Beggs, YWCA Greater Lafayette president/CEO.

Zonta Club of Vantaa II presents Centennial Anniversary Grant to benefit immigrant women in Finland

On 15 September, members of the Zonta Club of Vantaa II met with the Finnish Federation of Graduate Women, Vantaa Branch, to hand over the US$5,000 Centennial Anniversary Grant awarded by Zonta International.

The award-winning project is called Let’s Work Together, launched at the beginning of 2018. The goal was to employ immigrant women and teach them the Finnish language and Finnish practices. Marja-Liisa Toivanen acted as a “Primus Motor.”

The president of the association, Raija Sollamo, was delighted that the Zonta Club of Vantaa II chose them as a partner and emphasized how rare it is to distribute grants outside of your organization.

“The grant was really needed. We are currently operating in the Western part of the city, but are aiming to find partners and expand our project elsewhere in Vantaa.”

The idea for the project came about during the Let’s Read Together campaign, when it was noticed that immigrant women needed encouragement to use a new language and work outside the home. Many of them already have qualifications in their country of origin, but do not have access to employment due to lacking language skills. Fathers and children of immigrant families quickly learn Finnish at work and at school, but the situation is more difficult for women at home.

The purpose of the Let’s Work Together project is to provide help for the elderly, convalescent, carers and housewives, while also providing opportunities for immigrant women. The arrangement benefits both parties: the service buyer gets help and the immigrant woman gets to improve her Finnish language skills and to know the local culture, while the employer acts as a job instructor.

The project coordinator, Zana Kerveshi, migrated to Finland from Kosovo in 1992 while looking for a job. She now brings together immigrants who are in need of work and Finnish-speaking people who need help in their households.

“Both parties have been satisfied with the results. There have been nearly 40 immigrants, of which some have already been really employed, having gained work experience and improved their language skills. What we need now is more employers.”

Photo: The only Zonta International Centennial Anniversary Grant received in District 20 was handed over by Leena Hjort, vice president of the Zonta Club of Vantaa II (left), to Raija Sollamo (center), president, Graduate Women of Vantaa. Project coordinator Zana Kerveshi right.

The Zonta Club of Harrisburg-Hershey celebrated Zonta’s 100th Birthday with storytellers and the presentation of a special award

The Zonta Club of Harrisburg Hershey, District 3, celebrated Zonta International’s 100th birthday on 14 November 2019.

Members and guests enjoyed a trip down memory lane as “Zonta Storytellers” and shared Zonta’s history beginning with Marian de Forest in 1919.

The Zonta Club of Harrisburg-Hershey was one of 62 clubs to receive a Zonta International Centennial Anniversary Grant. The club’s US$5,000 grant went to support Shalom House in Harrisburg and its program “Voices of Hope.”

Shalom House Executive Director Denise Britton attended the centennial celebration and was also awarded the prestigious District 3 Centennial Champion Award. The club was honored to have District 3 Governor Joanne Gallos attend the celebration and present the award to Denise.

The social hour concluded with the group singing a rousing version of “Happy Birthday” to Zonta as Club President Elaine Weinert and Joanne Gallos blew out the candles on the birthday cake.

Zonta Club of Cleveland’s Centennial Anniversary Grant supports program to fight human trafficking

The Zonta Club of Cleveland was one of 62 clubs to receive a Zonta International Centennial Anniversary Grant. The club’s US$5,000 grant went to support a community street outreach program run by the Renee Jones Empowerment Center in East Cleveland, a high-incident suburb of Cleveland, Ohio.

Renee Jones Empowerment Center is devoted to preventing human trafficking and sexual exploitation by actively engaging the community in anti-trafficking efforts and educating service professionals, law enforcement, educators, students, parents, and the community on the realities of this growing crime.

Project Red Cord Night Out is a call to action. The main goals and objectives are to make trafficking victims aware of the broad spectrum of services which are available, to involve neighbors and community agencies and make them aware of the nature of the trafficking problem.

By partnering with Renee Jones Empowerment Center, the Zonta Club of Cleveland fulfilled the first objective of Zonta International: improving the legal, political, economic, educational, health and professional status of women through service and advocacy.

Members of the Zonta Club of Cleveland participated in the street outreach in September, October, November and December. Club members filled 200 Zonta bags with essential hygiene items such as body wash, shampoo and conditioner, and provided them to women who stopped by. They also handed out non-perishable food items such as cans of chicken noodle soup and tuna fish, boxes of macaroni and cheese, and healthy snacks.

Centennial Anniversary Grant funds safe house for gender-based violence survivors

Hope Shores Alliance was presented with a US$4,110 Zonta International Centennial Anniversary Grant through its partnership with the Zonta Club of of Alpena-Tri County Area, USA, District 15.

The grant money will support the services offered at the Hope Shores Alliance Alpena Safe House.

Hope Shores Alliance is the largest multi-service agency in Michigan serving primary and secondary survivors of sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking and domestic and dating violence.

Specific project funds such as those coming from the Zonta grant are used to help increase access for more survivors to residential and crisis-based services offered at the safe house, to create more spaces to empower and educate survivors and their children.

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