Our Stories

An Intern’s Story

By kford | April 1, 2020

Hello to all! Some of you may recognize me, Sonja Sparks, from last year’s Leadership Development program and most of you have almost definitely corresponded with me in some way over the past year. When IEEW’s Director of Operations, Karel Ford, contacted in me January of 2019 about the possibility of an internship, I was completely thrilled. You see, a…

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IEEW Board: Global Connectors in the USA

By kford | March 5, 2020

As they say, it takes a village. At IEEW, our village begins with our invaluable leadership team, the Board of Directors. These women help make empowering women entrepreneurs a lot more accessible. Their dedication to the mission of educating women business owners and their individual testimonies about their experiences with PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® alumnae inspire…

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Zahra is Erasing a Stigma in Afghanistan

By kford | March 4, 2020

Zahra Qasemi has a personal story that is sadly not too uncommon, but she has used her past to fuel her passion for progress as an empowered business owner. Zahra was raised in Iran as a refugee, which made it extremely difficult for her to continue her education. She was married at the age of…

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Books & Brains and Little Smiles

By kford | February 13, 2020

Branding is a key step to any new business. Sometimes a brand becomes part of our everyday vocabulary, such as googled, or Kleenex, and even bubble wrap. And some names become synonymous with an action; hoola-hoop, trampoline, and jet ski. So it is exciting to see some of the clever branding being used by students…

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Staying Rooted and Giving Back, Faheema Commits to her Home Country

By kford | January 30, 2020

What makes impact sustainable? Donor dollars should set the ball in motion for organic change within a community, not act as a source of reliance. One woman impacting many – that is the philosophy of creating peace through business. And that is why the PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® program is so important. One graduate from the…

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All Stories

Christine Hategekimana is Stepping Up as a Leader in Rwanda

By IEEW Intern | January 2, 2019

“As a woman, I can’t find words to express my gratitude for this opportunity given to me and other women, by Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women (IEEW) and PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® Rwanda which really changed my life and improved my business.” – Christine Hategekimana, PTB® Class of 2017. Christine has shown tremendous dedication to…

Igniting Inspiration for Women of All Ages

By kford | December 4, 2018

The women who come through our program are worth every single effort that we collectively put forth. Their personal stories of triumph over chaos and oppression ignite inspiration for women of all ages from around the world.

Mathilde and the Women of Destiny are Paying it Forward in Rwanda

By kford | October 30, 2018

The PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® program has stayed true to our core mission of empowering women across our 13 years of service. Each year, 60 women put together their business plan during in-country studies in Rwanda and Afghanistan.

Hakima Zolfaghari is Innovating Agriculture in Afghanistan

By kford | October 4, 2018

Hakima Zolfaghari has loved the earth and all its creatures, big and small, since she was a little girl. This fascination combined with her knack for finding solutions led her to buck the system as a young woman in Afghanistan seeking her Bachelor’s degree in Laboratory Science, a typically male-dominated field. Over the years, she…

Mentorship Spotlight: Nadine Kaligirwa and Laura Holt

By kford | August 2, 2018

These two women quickly discovered the many commonalities they shared. Although they grew up in very different backgrounds, and Nadine had to work so hard to get where she is today, they both noticed their similarities and common likenesses.

IEEW Spotlight into 2018

By kford | July 10, 2018

A new loan program, mini-courses in remotes provinces, and strengthened relationships define these past months. Fall of 2017 marked the beginning of a new training program in Afghanistan that IEEW has been working to launch for years. 54 women in Afghanistan’s more remote provinces (Mazar and Herat were pilot cities) were awarded certificates for completing…

Spotlight on Mentorship: Cathy Cruzan

By kford | June 4, 2018

This year, Cathy Cruzan was introduced to IEEW and eagerly volunteered to mentor a woman entrepreneur from another country.

Rita Zirimwabagabo Paying it Forward

By kford | May 1, 2018

Rita Zirimwabagabo, a 2011 PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® graduate, was born with a servant’s heart. One of eight children, by age 10 Rita had learned the value of hard work when her father died and the siblings bound together to keep the family afloat. She now runs her own supplement business, serves on the board of…

Laila Samani, Class of 2018, Using Agriculture to Create Opportunity

By kford | April 30, 2018

Through business, Laila is determined to build an environment of empowerment for women and we have no doubt that the future of her story will continue to create influence across the region.

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