Mission: Expanding Lives supports the education of West African young women who are the first in their families to continue past primary school. Strong, intelligent girls who are proving themselves against daunting odds are offered short-term, highly structured conferences in the United States. The conferences focus on bringing broader solutions to local problems.
We help young women to develop the voice, the self-confidence, and the problem solving skills necessary for empowerment. Expanding Lives encourages participants to become active role models, leaders, and agents of change in their home communities.
Target demographics: empower young West African women
Direct beneficiaries per year: 21 young women and 13 girls
Geographic areas served: Niger, West Africa and Chicago, IL
Programs: leadership, women's health, computer skills, peer mediation, business, and cultural exchange.
The name of this nonprofit says it all: expanding lives is what happens not only to the girls who come over from Niger as part of the educational program, but also to the people who volunteer. We hear from families that they see the world through new eyes after hosting girls, and high school students who work with us sometimes change their majors as a result. It's fun work with great, immediate outcomes.