Our Stories

The Urgency of Protecting Afghan Women Entrepreneurs’ Gains

By Guest | September 9, 2021

The number of Afghan women who own and run businesses grew from zero in 2002 to around 57,000 in 2020, including both licensed and unlicensed businesses. This was remarkable progress in less than two decades. I witnessed firsthand the growth of women in business and know stories of thousands of women from Kabul and other…

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Organizational Update

By Terry Neese | September 9, 2021

In the midst of everything else going on, we’ve made an exciting internal change. IEEW is pleased to introduce Anna Rohwer as our new Director of Global Operations!  Anna comes to us with 10 years of international development experience, with a focus on global non-profit operations, programs, and communications. Anna’s work has spanned continents and…

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15th Anniversary Awards Presentation

By kford | August 4, 2021

On July 15, 2021, the Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women celebrated 15 years by recognizing individuals who have made a significant contribution or impact. Honorees were recognized at an event hosted by HoganTaylor LLC Oklahoma City, with proceeds benefiting IEEW and its PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® program.

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What One Afghan Family Can Accomplish Out of Love & Compassion

By kford | June 2, 2021

Wahab and Manizha married in 2011. Manizha says of Wahab, “he has been a great partner, very gender sensitive and very courageous to break gender stereotypes.” Showing his understanding of his bride-to-be, Wahab assured Manizha that he expected her to continue her professional work and reach for the goals she had set. He emphasized, “in 5 or 10 years from now, I don’t want you to look back and say, ‘oh, you couldn’t do this or achieve that, because you married me’.” Wahab has been Manizha’s rock, ensuring that their life together remains as he promised the day they married. He supports her everyday work and accomplishments, but moreover, he enjoys her drive, respects her independence, appreciates her competency and deep sense of responsibility for family, friends, and indeed, for the world at large.

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Stories of Meticulous Balancing

By kford | May 28, 2021

“…Although at times the work takes her away from home, just like mine takes me away most of the time, we were blessed with autonomous children who have grown up into very reliable adults who look out for each other all the time. Mine has mostly been online parenting and sporadically physically present. Despite the enormous challenges that come with distance parenting, it doesn’t stop me from engaging them in discussions of values of hard work, discipline, respect for self and for others, especially our elders. Career and parenting requires very meticulous balancing.”

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All Stories

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.

Man-tors and Mentors, It Takes Us All

By Terry Neese | May 25, 2017

DIVERSITY IN ACTION. PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS(r) embraces our mission to empower women with every fiber of our collective being. And likewise we embrace diversity. So, lest our touting #womenempoweringwomen gave the impression otherwise, we thought it was high time to shine a light on an important part of our program across our 11 years of…

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