04.03.15 / Category: Impact - Grant Awards

Grantee Spotlight – VoiceFlame

VoiceFlame ignites personal, community and global transformation for girls and women through the power of writing and education. VoiceFlame envisions a world where writing and education are unifying forces for gender equality and the betterment of society. Circle of Sisterhood awarded VoiceFlame a $2,500 grant to fund the training of and supplies for teachers to execute its writing program in Malawi.

VoiceFlame believes that enabling girls and women to attain higher levels of education and become active members of the community benefits individuals, families, communities, and society; a perspective shared by Circle of Sisterhood. VoiceFlame reaches hundreds of individuals, enhancing leadership skills and empowering girls and women to express themselves. The program leads to increased school attendance, improved test scores, and the development of critical thinking skills. All of these elements mean positive change for the future of girls and women in Malawi, both economically and culturally.

VoiceFlame’s work shows that women who participate in writing workshops invite family and friends into the process, sharing the independence and sense of self that they acquire through their confidence in writing. Workshops not only provide participants a creative outlet, they empower them to tell female narratives that too often remain obscured. While Malawi boasts a woman president, its female population still faces severe economic, social, cultural, and educational discrimination. It is crucial that girls’ and women’s voices are heard, and VoiceFlame is committed to providing guidance toward this important goal. VoiceFlame’s work is aligned with the Malawian Ministry of Education’s goal of developing critical and creative thinkers who can contribute to the improvement of the country’s economy and social development. By training teachers, VoiceFlame ensures the sustainability of the work and its integration into Malawian culture and politics.

Your donations supported VoiceFlame’s fourth trip to Malawi to teach writing and literacy to women and girls. In addition to teacher training, school writing clubs (for students and their teachers) and community writing groups were formed, further expanding VoiceFlame’s reach. As Mary Tuchscherer, VoiceFlame CEO, stated in their final grant report: “Writing is a basic building block of education. Once a woman develops this skill, the world opens up and she can become a business owner, entrepreneur and community leader.” We share Mary’s sentiments as well as those expressed on these program participants’ shirts: