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Global Grassroots

Rating: 4.92 stars   13 reviews 2,464

Nonprofit Issues:

Civil Rights, Women

Address:

45 Lyme Road Suite 206 Hanover NH 03755 USA

Mission:

Global Grassroots is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that catalyzes ideas for social change designed by and for underserved women in post-conflict Africa. Our mission is to unite, empower and support relief of poor, distressed and underprivileged women worldwide.  Global Grassroots’ Academy for Conscious Change in Rwanda is a 12-18 month incubator offering non-profit management skills, leadership training, personal transformation practices, seed grants and high-engagement support that enables vulnerable women change agents to launch their own grassroots solutions benefiting women and girls.  All of the ventures are locally-designed and operated by our graduates as self-sustaining, non-profit endeavors. 

Results:

Since 2006, Global Grassroots has steadily built a track record of social impact in Rwanda.  We have trained over 250 emerging change agents, who have launched 11 sustainable, civil society organizations, and we have a further 9 social ventures now ready for seed funding.  Our teams are collectively serving 9,000 vulnerable women and girls annually, and touching a total of over 40,000 lives to date, including the children of venture beneficiaries and the audiences of their awareness work.

Target demographics:

Global Grassroots works through grassroots networks and partnerships to identify among vulnerable women, the emerging change agents who are committed to transforming the lives of women and girls.  Our participants include widows, genocide survivors, women living with HIV/AIDS, mothers with only a primary school education, and women living on $2 a day.  We also welcome into our program men who are eager to combat the underlying issues affecting women and girls, and on average, approximately 10 percent of our participants are men.  Our simple application requires that change agents form a team, identify their social issue priority and propose a solution to address that issue collectively.  We target groups at the earliest stage of their idea development, and invite between 3 and 5 representatives of each selected team into our Academy for Conscious Change.

Geographic areas served:

Rwanda

Programs:

The Academy for Conscious Change The first phase of the Academy is a 40 hour intensive, interactive training course that accelerates the process of personal and societal transformation. Our curriculum begins by investing in a personal growth process for each change agent. Our objective is to help these future change leaders expand their sense of self-awareness, develop tools for transforming oppression and suffering, cultivate compassion and initiate change responsibly. We believe it essential for future social change leaders to invest as much in inner transformation as they do in outer solutions, so that they may avoid the pitfalls of burn-out, abuse of power or pursuits that detract from constructive social change. We share practices in meditation and breathing to support trauma healing, and promote self-care to alleviate stress. Finally, by helping women map out their capabilities that can be leveraged for social change, we deepen their sense of agency, as they identify ways to make their own unique contribution. Integrated with the personal transformation work and conscious leadership practices, the second part of our training provides all of the skills needed to create a plan for a viable social enterprise. We begin by mapping social issue priorities and diagnosing core causes. Project teams then enter an intensive venture design process to construct a mission and vision, operational plan, organizational design, budget, creative resourcing strategies, evaluation metrics, strategic partnerships, a code of conduct and communications strategy. Following the academic portion of the program, teams move into a three to six month phase of hands-on project development support to prepare for launch. Our local staff works with each team to ensure that the project is designed to be self-sufficient, has measurable goals and objectives and will address a root cause of the underlying issue to create systemic change for women and girls. Projects which meet our criteria for social impact and sustainability receive seed funding averaging $4000 for their start-up costs and a further 12 months of high-engagement support. These locally-designed social ventures are not small businesses, but are instead small non-profits driven by a social purpose to address a priority issue facing women, such as domestic violence, water access or illiteracy. Evaluation metrics and ongoing assessment are incorporated into the operations phase to ensure the development of a strong organization.

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More Info

603-643-0400
www.globalgrassroots.org

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Reviews for Global Grassroots

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Global Grassroots should serve as an example of how development work should be done. Their programs teach and inspire all of us that have worked in the development field. Thanks for your great work.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

As part of a master’s program I recently spent two months in Rwanda during which time I talked with, interviewed and observed many organizations, both local and international, working on improving every area of life for the Rwandese people. I was deeply inspired and impressed when I learned about the work Global Grassroots is doing to educate and empower women to become their own powerful social change agents. Whereas I became leery of the charity-oriented mentality of many other international organizations working in Rwanda (and doubtful about the effectiveness of the actual work on the ground) a closer look at Global Grassroots offered an example of positive work from a paradigm I can stand firmly behind. You can read about the organization’s firm beliefs about the paramount necessity of the “conscious” piece of social change, and their other ideals on their website. I want to tell you what I saw on the ground. Picture a market, bustling daily with the everyday commerce of mostly women selling vegetables, cloth, offering their seamstress services. In the corner of the market, every afternoon from 3:30-5:30, a small door opens up and market sellers and other village women shuffle in for their daily lessons in literacy organized by their other friends from the village. The literacy skills the women gain empower them to be more assertive in their households, make better decisions for their families, and be more engaged in society. The same women have gotten together to learn math skills so that they can run their market businesses better. This is progress - for women, by women, sustained by the community. When the literacy class files out the classroom becomes a stage for another woman’s project. She is also a graduate of the Global Grassroots Academy of Conscious Change and is creating community theatre as a way to initiate community discussions about gender roles. The classroom is packed deep with people observing skits depicting different common interactions between women and men. Amongst the riots of laughter generated, there are also important dialogues starting and seeds being planted to show women and men another way to be in their village. Truly inspired by all of this I observed on the ground, I contacted the director of Global Grassroots to see how I could be involved. What developed was a project in which I got to explore my own passions- alternative healing techniques- in conjunction with helping Global Grassroots get a sense of the alternative healing field in Rwanda. By both the in-country coordinator, and the director who was busy working in other parts of the world, I have never felt more supported and empowered as I embarked on this journey to explore some of the inner healing work happening in Rwanda. Global Grassroots’ need for research before starting any new project paralleled the papers I was writing in graduate school about culturally appropriate and sustainable international development work. Again and again I saw Global Grassroots investing its energy and resources into carrying out their intentions for sustainable, proactively conscious work that empowers the local community and builds the capacity among women to change their own lives. It has been a gift to discover the commitment, passion, and intentionality behind the work Global Grassroots in doing in Rwanda. My desire to be continue to be involved in international development work is renewed as long as I can work for organizations like this one.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the support I have felt to continue to following my own convictions that my inner growth work is tied directly to the work I can do to help others become empowered. I know now this paradigm is relevant and needed in all parts of the world.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Gretchen Wallace graciously reached out to allow our organization to begin as a project of her group. Our mission fit perfectly into their work on advocacy around genocide and it was a wonderful way to be nurtured in a very professionally run organization. Her thoughtful management style and highly ethical practices raise the bar for all who come into contact with her.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As part of a professional group of women founders with Gretchen I have seen her grow Global Grassroots and extend the impact of her original ideas. She has a serious talent for nurturing creativity and leadership skills in others that is rare.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Provide it with greater financial resources so that their methodology could impact even more women.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The guidance we have received on how to manage growth in a non-profit environment while balancing your commitment to social issues.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Thoughtful and committed.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Leverage it to have the impact of 100 million bucks.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time with Gretchen - we have now developed into our own organization but she continues to advise and nurture our work and we are deeply grateful.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

A need for greater funding. They have terrific capacity to reach more women.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Global Grassroots proves that it's not just having a good idea - it's executing it well.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

5 people found this review helpful

Even as an observer and contributor, I have been amazed by the level of energy that Global Grassroots pours into every project. This is an organization that goes far beyond trying to treat the symptoms of social ills, and instead focuses on education to enact fundamental change. From teaching basic business practices to women in Rwanda to providing stress management classes in Haiti, Global Grassroots cultivates a spirit of social entrepreneurship to, quite simply, make people's lives better.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

reading the frequent updates on how my contributions are used to help women worldwide.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Extremely passionate about their work!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Make serious inroads into ending gender inequality, economic dependence, and social problems worldwide.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

5 people found this review helpful

I have been a donor to Global Grassroots for several years and have had the opportunity to travel abroad to see their Conscious Change Academy in action in Rwanda. Their work in Rwanda was impressive to behold: the women served had created real change in their lives. The work of Global Grassroots seeks to help women solve problems they have themselves identified in their communities: they fulfill the promise of change for the women they serve and they do so through the model of empowerment. Global Grassroots is a small, but supremely well-run and effective charity. I am convinced of the integrity of their work and their personnel.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Rwanda, Chad and the USA

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Global Grassroots is one of the greatest champions of people in developing nations. Their impact is multifaceted in training women to become agents of social change, aiding in the development of social change and supplying the funds necessary to implement the social change. One of the greatest aspects of GG is that its’ work focuses on the empowerment of the social change agent by creating a network of support, multidimensional training and friendship. Having worked with GG in Rwanda the summer of 2009, I have witnessed first hand the impact of GG on the ground. The empowerment it gives to individuals and communities is truly impressive. There are not enough words of praise for Gretchen Wallace and the organization she has created.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Rwanda. I while in country I was able to meet with each GG working group twice to see their accomplishments, listen to their stories and hear their praises for GG. I also participated in a Training Workshop for the groups and saw the desire to learn.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

its unwavering commitment to the GG mission. There is nothing hidden, no agendas, no egos, just a desire to help heal the world. I am learning so much from Gretchen Wallace about NGO's, giving and personal growth! I can not wait to help GG, in any manner!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

Gretchen Wallace has been a fantastic boss and mentor. The way she runs the Global Grassroots office is how she runs the organization-- with the vision of a true leader, and with an open heart. Her passion for the projects established by the graduates of the Academy for Conscience Change is truly inspirational, and her unflagging enthusiasm and commitment to constantly improve the organization is a quality that every change agent in this world should strive for. Gretchen is a wonderful listener, and that comes across both in her interactions with people and in the success of Global Grassroots. If someone offers a suggestion to improve the organization-- regardless of whether it's an established board member, an illiterate woman in Rwanda, or a student intern-- she always seriously considers the feedback. This collaborative spirit, willingness to learn from others, and openness to (societal, organizational, and personal) transformation has permeated the organization and is at its core. My personal experience with the organization has been extremely positive. I have interned with Global Grassroots for nearly a year, and I feel very fortunate to work with a team that has visible impact in people's lives.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I manage screenings for The Devil Came on Horseback (GG is the charitable producing arm). It's inspirational to see people respond to the crisis presented--often we will receive letters from individuals asking how they can make an impact and get involved.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

feeling like my work has a direct impact on other people's lives, as well as the wonderful mentors I have access to.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

all passionate, considerate, and unassuming. My coworkers constantly inspire me with their life stories and insights.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

scale into Uganda, Sudan, Haiti, and other critical countries; help rebuild hundreds of thousands of fractured lives; empower thousands of women and girls; and (consciously) change the world.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

I have been tracking GG since it's beginning. It is an amazing organization that helps people in the right way. It teaches Women and Men to be self sufficient and how they can help themselves. They gain necessary skills to help entire communities. Gretchen does this work in a unique way. She is trying to work herself out of a job instead of continuing to hand out aid and make populations aid dependent. She is most definitely part of the solution.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen the change in peoples lives. I have seen Women cry and sing and dance all at the same time.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Give them a million dollars so that they can hire more people to go out and help more. No a billion. They need to be everywhere.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

They do great work and change peoples lives forever. They don't just hand out stuff, they teach.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Friendly, kind and knowledgeable.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Make so much change. They would empower millions of women around the world. They could change the way we think about aid.

Ways to make it better...

They were everywhere.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding. They need more funds so that they can expand to other areas and hire more staff.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Good luck!!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-3-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 4 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

It is not often that one meets such a dedicated and compassionate individual whom has devoted her life to build an organization in-service of supporting female social entrepreneurs around the world. Gretchen Steidle Wallace brings inspiration to the work that the entire Global Grassroots team/network collaborate to achieve.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As a donor and collaborator I highly recommend supporting the Global Grassroots team. Gretchen is an excellent speaker and advocate for Global Grassroots IN ADDITION to her passion and commitment to working directly with the women GGR supports.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

Global Grassroots gives women the tools they need to create social change in their communities. Personal transformation and sound business skills through the Global Grassroots year long training and support program enables women to address issues specifically and locally.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Rwanda on the ground. I have seen projects up and running successfully, and new trainees enter into the program.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

the most dedicated group of individuals.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

help women become self-sufficent and create social change in a meaningful and lasting way.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful?