WE Lead: Empowering Resilient Women and Girls

On Tuesday, October 16th, we met at Williams Park for our fourth and last workshop in our series for the Overtown Empowering Resilient Women and Girls program. The first workshop, We Learn, explored how climate change impacts us individually and collectively as a community. The second workshop, We Prepare, looked at emergency preparedness from a practical and financial point of view. The third workshop, We Act, we took a look at the importance of civic engagement and why it’s so important to vote. Our last workshop, We Lead closed our series with a short recap of all 4 workshops; followed by a strong panel of women discussing entrepreneurship and leadership in their community; and 2 other guest speakers discussing women’s issues and entrepreneurship opportunities.

Natalia and Olivia kicked off the evening with a recap from the first three workshops focusing on climate change, emergency preparedness and civic engagement.

Our panel was led by our Executive Director, Yoca, and included:

Dr. Pandwe Gibson founder of Ecotech Visions;  Kilan Bishop, PhD candidate and member of the City of Miami Sea Level Rise Committee; and Lisa Merkel, founder of Box Greens.  All women discussed the work they do in their communities, the challenges and rewards of doing that work, as well as the importance of maintaining self-confidence and believing in the work we do. Myya Passmore from the IdeaCenter at Miami Dade College also discussed the programs available to help entrepreneurs trying to grow their businesses and sharpen their skills. We closed the evening with a very candid and thoughtful talk by Kathy Anderson, the Executive Director at the Women’s Fund Miami. She discussed her journey, as well as touched on the important work the Women’s Fund is doing.

Our last workshop was a big success, a wonderful blend of insightful storytelling and sharing of real life experiences, inspiring us all to continue to reach higher. We also had the opportunity to hand out certificates to more than 7 women that had attended all 4 workshops and celebrate our community as a whole.

As we reflect back on the 4 workshops, we know that many of the participants were able to gain some valuable knowledge on climate change, as well the other topics that were covered, and learn about new opportunities and actions they can take in the community to become even more resilient. We will use the next few months to debrief, look at the lessons learned and find ways that we can improve our program for our next series in 2019. We are looking forward to running the program in Allapattah and returning to Overtown for a second round. A huge thank you to all the women and volunteers that helped shape this program, and who spoke with our participants. And a huge thank you to all the women that attended and brought the program to life.

“A woman with a voice, is by definition, a strong woman”

-Melinda Gates