Daily News

Women’s Fund Program Featured in National Storytelling Platform

EASTHAMPTON — The Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts’ Leadership Institute for Political and Public Impact (LIPPI) was one of several featured programs that launched Tuesday during the rollout of a new national storytelling initiative unveiled by the Women’s Funding Network (WFN) at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting.

The uniquely interactive digital tool seeks to bring attention to a leading challenge facing women in the U.S. and around the world — economic security — and lift up the vital work of women’s foundations that are addressing this issue.

“Telling the story of local women on a national scale is crucial to the work we do. If we want our communities to thrive, we must ensure the economic security of women,” said Elizabeth Barajas-Román, CEO, of the Women’s Fund. This year, Barajas-Román was invited to represent Western Mass. on the national board of the Women’s Funding Network.

The launch highlights the story of the Women’s Fund LIPPI program, a unique leadership institute developed in response to a shortage of women in civic leadership positions, in public office, and serving on boards. The coursework equips women with the tools and confidence to become civic and political leaders.

More than 250 participants are now leaders in their local communities; 22 have run for elected office, one received a gubernatorial appointment, one graduate is the first female police chief of Northampton, one ran a successful race for mayor of Pittsfield, and two graduates are serving in executive cabinet positions. Many more continue to serve on various boards and commissions, organizing grassroots campaigns, and raising their collective voices on issues that impact women and families.

The Economic Security Digital Storytelling Platform is a data-driven, yet narrative, evidence of women’s foundations’ ongoing commitment to ensuring women’s economic prosperity. The platform gives users the opportunity to explore the data alongside the powerful stories of the women, programs, and organizations making an impact on this issue, breathing life into facts and figures. The responsive and flexible format encourages user engagement and learning by featuring links and downloadable files throughout, as well as links to social media to make these important stories easy to share.

WFN’s Economic Security Digital Storytelling Platform can be previewed at economicsecurity.womensfundingnetwork.org.

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