Ahead of International Women’s Day on Tuesday, more than 100 people gathered at Vancouver’s Jericho Beach to take part in the Walk in Her Shoes Challenge, a charity walk to raise funds for women in Bolivia and their families.
Carolina Ordoñez, who was born in the South American nation, said the fundraiser organized by CARE Canada can help “empower women in creating small businesses they already have, and into making it into something more sustainable for the entire family and for the whole community.”
For many women in Bolivia, reaching food, water or work requires them to walk 10,000 steps a day. The Walk in her Shoes Challenge asks participants to walk 10,000 steps as a show of support for women in developing countries.
“Sixty per cent of the people there live in extreme poverty,” CARE Canada’s Joanne Gassman said. “Women get up at four in the morning and don’t go to bed until nine o’clock at night and it’s all very heavy manual labour.”
The CARE Canada project aims to provide Bolivian women education, training and equipment to help them build their businesses and potentially change their lives.
So far CARE Canada has raised $1.7 million with the help of donors and the federal government, but it’s the numbers of families that have been supported that really matters.
“For every one woman we take out of poverty, she brings four other with women with her, which I think is incredibly powerful,” Gassman said.
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