Five Weeks of Giving 2014 – The Akilah Institute for Women

December 20, 2014 in Appaman News

Katie’s “pay it forward” pick is the Akilah Institute for Women is a women’s college with campuses in Rwanda and Burundi and headquarters in NYC.

By providing low income women with access to affordable, market-relevant education, industry-specific skills and job placement services, Akilah prepares students for careers in the booming private sector economy of East Africa, which faces a shortage of qualified employees. In a region with high underemployment, where 85% of women still work in subsistence agriculture (earning less than $2 per day), and just 1% of the population enters university (and less than 1/3 of students are female), access to education is the tool that empowers women to build their own professional identity, become leaders, and drastically improve the standard of living for themselves and their families. Akilah graduates, on average, earn five times the national average income, and 1/3 are the heads of their households.

Katie says:

“Around the world, women are denied access to educational opportunities that I spent most of my life taking entirely for granted, limiting their personal autonomy and ability to to take control of their health, wellbeing, finances, and future. Educating women and girls has been proven to be the single most effective way that a developing region can improve the lives and safety of individuals, families, and the community at large. But worldwide, women — especially those from low income backgrounds —  face unique challenges and cultural barriers that keep them out of professional spheres. I love how Akilah, in addition to providing practical on-the-job skills, focuses on developing students’ abilities in critical thinking, confidence, leadership and team building. A friend of mine works for this great organization and so I’ve gotten to hear first hand how dedicated they are to creating an educational model that does right by its students and continues to meet its own high expectations.”

akilah_logoFor more information, visit www.akilahinstitute.org.

Every holiday season, Appaman employees each get to select a charity of their choice to receive a donation. View all of 2014?s Five Weeks of Giving selections here.

 

Pay it Forward – Katie Luscombe

December 14, 2012 in Appaman News

For Appaman’s Seven Weeks of Giving program, Katie chose to “pay it forward” to the Listening Ear Crisis Center in East Lansing, Michigan (home of her alma mater, Michigan State University…go green!).

Katie says,

“The Listening Ear defines crisis as ‘any situation in which your normal coping mechanisms are ineffective or unavailable.’ Their free, confidential crisis center & hotline has been open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year since July 15, 1969, providing compassionate support for callers and walk-in clients from all walks of life. The all-volunteer staff participates in 65 hours of empathy-based training to help clients cope with difficulties including depression, grief, suicide, loneliness, sexual assault, and more. They also provide free sexual assault counseling, advocacy, and community education.

I volunteered as a crisis counselor from 2004-2006, so I can say from experience that the training program is second to none, and the staff is incredibly caring and dedicated. My experience with The Ear was easily one of the most highly educational experiences of my college career, and I’m very happy to be able to give back to an organization that directly improves (and often saves) lives.”

Learn more at TheEar.org

Welcome aboard the Appaman train

November 12, 2012 in Appaman News

Katie Luscombe, a lovely midwestern gal with a quirky sense of humor, incredible talents in nail art, baby naming, and impressive journalistic talents has officially joined Team Appaman. She runs our online division bringing fun social media, great customer service and online e-commerce charm.

We have been lucky enough to know Katie for a few years from her background in the children’s industry and when a position opened up, we pounced. This post is long overdue, but since Katie typically does them and she is that kind of humble gal, it didn’t get done. So please give a warm welcome to Katie when you get a minute.

Pictured above: Katie (L); Katie as Effie Trinket (R)