Who knew a woman who runs around on TV with a gun and another who runs around in heels would have so much in common? We were brought together through a bizzare turn of events, and we discovered our mutual goal of empowering women using our own unique voices. We decided to journey together with Kris, Farouk Shami, Patricia Arquette, Suzanne Lerner, and a few of their friends to experience the Haiti that Maria has come to know and love through her organization, We Advance.
We Advance was started after the earthquake in January 2010, as a direct response to the increase in gender-based violence and poor health care for women in the poorest areas of the country. We Advance works with and represents the voices of over 40 micro-organizations working in the most desperate situations and communities in Haiti.
Our itinerary was to visit some of the small, grassroots NGOs that We Advance works with, including Artists for Peace and Justice, Femmes en Democratie, and Give Love, and to join women at the trade fair and fashion show in celebrating their achievements.
This is who we celebrated:
Danielle St. Lot: Danielle has been a women’s rights activist in Haiti for 35 years. She galvanizes women to stand up for economic, political, and social justice and equality with her organization Femmes en Democratie. She launched the women’s trade fair in Haiti this past weekend with women artisans and designers from all over the country to promote their products and to show their beautiful fashions. As a former Minister of Commerce, Danielle knows that it is through not only charity but creating employment that Haiti will rise.
Claudia Apaid: Claudia is the daughter of a Haitian entrepreneur, who went to an orphanage to give toys to kids for Christmas, and, seeing the appalling conditions that the children lived in, founded Sow a Seed in 2004. Sow a Seed is an organization that collaborates with partners with orphanages all over the country to give better care to their children. She threw a Christmas party this weekend for 500 orphans, many of whom experienced their first Christmas ever.
Barbara Guillaume: Barbara is a women’s leader, poet, singer, and co-founder of We Advance. She is running for mayor of Cité Soleil, the poorest slum in the western hemisphere, because, as she says, “If we can change the worst of Haiti, we can change all of Haiti.”
Caroline Sada: Caroline is a beautiful, 37-year-old powerhouse who grew up in Haiti and was educated in the States. She worked as a high-level executive with an international makeup company and left it all after the earthquake to come back and rebuild her country.
Sophia Martelly: Before becoming the First Lady of Haiti, Sophia dedicated her life and energy to people in need in the slums of Haiti. Now she will launch her country’s “12 by 12″ initiative in January, which will enable thousands of households run by single mothers to buy food and send their children to school.
We came to celebrate the thousands of Haitian women who are working tirelessly every day to bring economic and social justice to all people in Haiti. So to them we say: we are humbled and moved to have been with you and to tell the world about your grace. We are proud to tell the world your stories.
The mission statement of We Advance is, “We are stronger together than we are alone.”
We are grateful to partner with such amazing women and to have been on this journey together.
Please join the journey: weadvance.org.
Forget about her messy love life. Kim Kardashian put the drama behind her for several days last week and over the weekend — when she and her mom, Kris Jenner, visited Haiti for a pre-holiday humanitarian mission.
In a new photo from Saturday, Kardashian, 31, and Jenner, 56, look on serenely with a local Haitian child (wearing colorful beaded jewelry and a “Spread the Joy” t-shirt) at an event.
The mother and daughter were visiting the impoverished nation — still rebuilding from the devastating January 2010 earthquake — as part of We Advance, the organization cofounded by actress Maria Bello.
Along with Bello, fellow actress Patricia Arquette and designer Donna Karan, the reality stars visited the Artists for Peace and Justice School, helped replenish supplies at We Advance clinics, checked out a fashion show launched by local women and designers and celebrated at the Sow a Seed Christmas bash, where 500 local orphans were treated with gifts. The final stop on the agenda: An intimate meeting with the President of Haiti, Michel Martelly.
According to its website, We Advance strives to “advance the health, safety and well being of women throughout Haiti,” working in “some of the poorest slums in all of the Western Hemisphere.”
Kardashian — in the midst of an ugly divorce from Kris Humphries — had an “amazing” experience on the mission, a pal told Us.
To read the full article on usmagazine.com, click here or on the image below:
Yesterday, We Advance is thrilled to have had our first ever graduation ceremony for over 40 men and women in our English program. Here is a clip from the ceremony in Haiti!
By Leah Ornstein - Radar Style & Beauty Editor
After the devastating earthquake in Haiti in January 2010, actress Maria Bello and a group of women started the WE ADVANCE charity to improve the health, safety and well-being of women throughout the slums of the ravished country’s capital city, Port-au-Prince.
The group recently re-visited the developing nation, bringing a camera crew with them to document their program in action, and RadarOnline.com has the inspiring video, narrated by the critically acclaimed actress
In the video, which premiered at The Hamptons For Haiti Benefit last month to a crowd which included Mariska Hargitay, Liev Schreiber, Fisher Stevens,Patricia Arquette and Donna Karan, Bello explains how she, Barbara Guillaume, Alison Thompson, Aleda Frishman and a group of prominent Haitian women got together to discuss the problems facing Haiti.
“This small country boasts over 10,000 NGOs and received over a billion dollars of aid after the earthquake, yet the conditions remain abysmal,” Bello says. “Where did all that money go? It made us angry. WE ADVANCE was created because, basically, we were p***ed off. We wanted results.”
In the last 7 months, the group has created the Nap Vanse Family Clinic, which has seen and treated more than 10,000 people, started-up educational programs, providing natives with the opportunity to learn English and take classes in sanitation, art therapy and physical education, and also treated children to a weekly wash day, where 200 kids get to take a bath.
To read the full article on RadarOnline.com, click here or on the image below:
WeAdvance.org, GlobalDirt.org and Plum Hamptons Magazine hosted the Hamptons For Haiti benefit event on Sunday afternoon to raise funds for Cité Soleil in Haiti—the poorest region in the Western hemisphere.
After holding the hand of a young boy who had his arm amputated without anesthesia due to lack of medical supplies, Maria Bello co-founded WeAdvance.org to take direct action for the well-being of suffering Haitians.
The fundraiser was held at The Ross School in East Hampton on Sunday, July 17th, 2011, and featured musical performances by The Diva of Haiti Barbara Guillaume, prodigy pianist Gamar Josama and singer Melky Jean (sister of Wyclef) as well as a sobering yet uplifting documentary about WeAdvance.org that hits home for why Haiti needs our help right now.
Other notable guests included Mariska Hargitay, Patricia Arquette, Donna Karan, Cristina Cuomo, Sean Avery, Hilary Rhoda, Terry Quinn, Doug Liman, Fisher Stevens, and Liev Schreiber.
Silent auction items included a visit to Maria Bello’s NBC Fall series Prime Suspect set with actor Aiden Quinn, a visit to NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit set with actress Mariska Hargitay, lanterns fromRestoration Hardware, tablets from VINCI Tab, artwork by artists Peter Tunney, Beth O’Donnell, Anthony Russell in conjunction with Raphael Mazzuco and Marc Baptiste, a photo shoot with Elizabeth Jordan, and a cruise aboard Courtney Ross’ glamorous boat.
Sponsor tables included Soft Serve Fruit Co. to keep us all cool, rum from Ron Dominicano, and a fancy lemonade stand from the Sweet ‘Tauk ladies.
All proceeds from the event benefit WeAdvance.org and GlobalDirt.org, whose impact on the community was immediately felt from their first days on the island. They’ve established the first-ever ambulance service in the area, and are providing medical care, education and support for those who need assistance in rebounding from the 2010 earthquake.
Guests received gift bags with items from Christopher Fischer Cashmere, Madame Paulette®,GlobalDirt.org, Kenneth Mark, M.D., FACMS Office, restaurants Philippe Chow and Nello Summertime, Angelo David Salon, RéVive, Popchips, Bond No. 9 New York, Laura Geller Makeup, Rene Furterer, Plum Magazine, and The Third Wave: A Volunteer Story by author Alison Thompson.
To read the full article and view photos from the event on SociallySuperlative.com, click here or on the image below:
Thank you to everyone who came, participated and donated to our wonderful event that was held on July 17, 2011, which we hosted with our partner, Global DIRT. Together we raised over $10K through our live auction that featured art donated by Peter Tunney, Marc Baptiste, Elizabeth Jordan, and donations. We also celebrated the release and book signing of Alison Thompson’s book, The Third Wave. The raised funds went toward establishing the first ever ambulance service and our ongoing efforts in Cité Soleil, Haiti–the poorest slum in the western hemisphere. We are so grateful for our friends who came to show their support like Mariska Hargitay and Patricia Arquette just to name a few. More photos to come!
East Hampton - On Sunday, July 17 from 12 noon to 3 p.m., Maria Bello, Mariska Hargitay, Keifer Sutherland, Donna Karan, Cristina Ross, Elizabeth Jordan, Clare Munn, Sonja Nuttall, Leslee Feldman,Brian Doug Lyman, Jean Shafiroff, Fisher Stevens, Terry Quinn, Courtney Ross, Beth O’Donnell, Alison Thompson, Kristine Szabo, Andrew Saffir, Amanda Patricia Velasquez, Marc Baptiste, and Ross Bleckner are just some of the stars to appear at “The Hamptons For Haiti” fundraiser to be held at the Ross School. The event will feature a cocktail brunch and a live auction featuring walk-on roles on many of today’s hottest primetime shows. There will also be a musical performance by The Diva Barbara Guillaume all to raise funds to benefit We Advance and Global Dirt, two not-for-profits that are dedicated to making a difference in Haiti.
“All proceeds will go to We Advance and Global Dirt, two Haiti organizations that work side by side” said Thompson, one of the founders, along with Bello, of We Advance, and author of “Third Wave” a book about volunteering. “We Advance focuses on gender-based violence, with an emphasis on educating and empowering rape victims and the children of Haiti, while Global Dirt’s mission is to buy an ambulance and mobilize a 911 rescue service that is very much needed.”
To read the full article on Hamptons.com, click here or on the image below:
Star power unites to help change lives in Haiti. By, Lisa Finn
The benefit which will feature a slate of A-list prime-time celebs, including Maria Bello, Mariska Hargitay, Keifer Sutherland and many more, who will lend their star power to making in a difference in the lives of impoverished children and rape victims in Haiti.
The event, which features a cocktail brunch, live auction – with exciting prizes including walk-on roles on primetime television shows – and a musical performance by The Diva Barbara Guillaume, benefits We Advance and Global Dirt, two not for profit organizations aimed at bettering tomorrows.
Global Disaster Immediate Response Team (DIRT) was founded in January 2010 by Adam Marlatt shortly after the devastating earthquake in Haiti. Adam and fellow Marine Robert Sullivan have created a volunteer force dedicated to providing immediate assistance to victims of disasters worldwide, including Haiti.
We Advance founders Alison Thompson, humanitarian and disaster relief veteran, and “ER” star and women’s right activist Maria Bella work together on infusing hope into dire situations.
To read the full article on EastHampton.Patch.com, click here or on the image below:
A year after the devastating earthquake in Haiti, Michael Stars co-founder, Suzanne Lerner, joined actress Maria Bello and Women Donors Network (WDN) along with We Advance teams to advocate for the health, safety and well-being of Haitian women in a nation already overcome by great loss.
Equipped with 500 pounds of donated toiletries and 200 Michael Stars tees, these organizations made their way through Haiti visiting a number of women’s organizations, including the We Advance clinic in Cité Soleil, one of the poorest areas in the Western hemisphere, distributing goods to those in need.
To read the full article on MichaelStars.com, click here or on the image below: