Those that have been through the most atrocities in life, rise the highest. Throughout history, we have seen those who were treated the worst in society to rise up and rule back again.

Do you know that in many parts of the world, women are still treated as secondary beings–yes even in today’s time? You better believe it that they WILL rise and they will be successful, as equal to and quite possibly even surpassing their male counterparts. But this may not be possible until they are given the proper education, training and guidance to achieve their goals in life ans become active global citizens. How can you help? Whether man or woman, you can feel confident that community service will bring about a difference. 

Saturday, March 10th, 2012: Guest Speaker – Paola Gomez.

Today we had a wonderful speaker, possibly one of my favorites so far at the GLP Panama 2012 program Women as Change Agents. Paola Gomez is a GLP Alumni, a female entrepreneur, a Panamanian, a social worker, as well as a leader. She is a leader in her community, where she has started possibly one of the best businesses in the region.

Wanting to be a community developer an to empower women, Paola did something that would both satisfy her needs as well as the needs of her community. She designed a business plan that would allow her to live her dream and also allow others to dream-and both can see their dreams come true with combined efforts. Paola works with 2 tribal women groups. Historically, these women have been known to hate one another. But it is beyond amazing how they decided to come together and join efforts in order to have a brighter present and future for themselves and their families.

These women came from very poor families, were uneducated, discriminated against in their communities, and had husbands who often beat them out of frustration due to lack of money, food, resources etc. These women had no rights. Paola helped empower these women by giving them an opportunity to prove to their husbands and their community that they were also worth something. That they too could make a difference in their children’s future.

Being the smart entrepreneur, Paola scoped out the skill these women had-they could weave and they did an excellent job of it! She got these women to make jewelry and clothing they way they knew how to do it best, and then went on to sell these items in the international trade markets! Not only did he help live her dream of helping her community women, she also gave these women a new life. Their communities and husbands had a new perspective on the value of their women now.

These woman earned more than their husbands, ran households, fed their families, sent their children to school now and everyone in the community was affected positively. These men have a new found respect for their woman and are often seen helping their wives with the sewing in order to increase profits.

Paola Gomez is a very successful young female entrepreneur. Her wonderful work goes to show much we can all do if we just are passionate about our dreams and we are willing to work hard. And of course, getting others involved is another skill that everyone of us needs to master. Because only we can become the change we want to see in the world. We must take charge, help others and alleviate the status of women, while also fighting poverty.

With some creative you can reach out and can change the life of a woman, her family and a generation, forever. But it won’t happen until you decide to make the move. To implement change and to fight for equality.