HELLO FROM OUR FOUNDER & CHIEF INSTIGATING OFFICER
Dear SHE Trailblazers,
At SHE, we have always been driven by the bold idea that addressing simple, common, and yet largely ignored problems can be at the forefront of achieving sustainable economic development. Our SHE28 initiative gets to the heart of that philosophy. We now have the evidence that our philosophy is working too in Rwanda: 600 farmers with a 33% boost in income, 12 new jobs created at our production site, 6,000 students with improved access to menstrual health education in 2015.
To our many supporters: Thank you. This is your success, too. And it’s only the beginning of our work to grow and scale in 2016. It’s your financial support that has laid the groundwork to reach 250,000 girls by 2017. Taking the helm of our growth of SHE28 is our first Executive Director, Melissa Driver Beard. I am excited to have Melissa on board. She brings an incredible amount of experience and knowledge in scaling innovative health technologies.
Now we’re setting our sights globally, and that’s being driven by market demand. Over 300 enterprising individuals have reached out to us from 30+ countries from across the world. With Johnson and Johnson as our technical collaborator, we’re on our track to making that happen.
As an economist by training, I am driven by numbers and the bottom line. When the McKinsey Global Institute recently announced that advancing women’s equality could add $12 trillion to global growth by 2025, I consider it another data point that affirms we’re on track to go global.
On top of the jobs created, the income generated, and the number of girls with improved access to affordable pads and health education, our patented innovation along with the many lessons learned, have made SHE ready to develop and test new high impact solutions that can enable millions of more girls and women to drive economic and social change in an unprecedented way.
SHE is in the long game of economic development. Thank you for being a part of SHE, and sharing our belief that investing in the small, overlooked, and taboo things can drive an economy.
Not hold onto your hats and get ready for more groundbreaking work!
Founder & CEO
HELLO FROM OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Dear SHE Trailblazers,
It has been an exciting adventure since I joined SHE in September 2015. I spent my first few weeks on the ground in Rwanda observing our market-based approach in action – from the rural farm co-operative to our production site in Ngoma to the rural schools and communities. It didn’t take long for me to fully experience SHE’s mission and realize that local leadership is central to our vision of systemic change. Together with the women farmers of the Umunezero co-op, the women working in go! pad production for SHE, and the girls who use go! pads, we are co-creating a new eco-system that builds up women and girls. It’s an incredibly impressive process and one in which your generous support has played a significant role.
In 2015, we focused on delivery of our go! pads to the girls who need them most. We sold nearly 9,000 packs of go! pads directly to girls, to schools, and to NGOs that increase our access to the hardest-to-reach girls. These sales not only established proof-of-concept for go! pads, they also prove that go! will be economically sustainable market-based solution to a severly overlooked problem. While we are excited about go! product sales, our focus remains on designing a business model to scale for global impact. That’s why our work has been and continues to be powered by strategic collaboration: with NGOs and local community based organizations, with research universities such as MIT and North Carolina State University, with global advocates such as UNESCO and UNICEF, and most recently, with global health organizations such as Johnson and Johnson.
We are so thankful that supporters like you recognize the importance of our work and are continuing to contribute financially to our vision. You are a key part of our team. Our current success would not be possible without you.
I cannot wait to see what 2016 brings! I invite all of you to be a part of SHE at this exciting time. Thank you all for your continued support.
Melissa Driver Beard
Secured U.S. patent for innovative and mechanical purposes.
Instigated $35,000 yearly sanitation and MHM budget to purchase pads for Rwandan school girls.
Trained 50 community health workers to sell menstrual pads to 5,000 women and girls.
Trained 51 teachers to deliver puberty education and hygiene management education to 807 students.
Educated 6500+ women and girls through our health and education programs.
FY 2015 IMPACT
SHE 28 Highlights
Watch How We Make Our go! pads in Rwanda
Our fundraising SHE Champions have done many crazy things to ensure that girls don’t miss out because they can’t afford pads. But none have ever climbed a mountain!
The #climbforSHE team trekked up 19,340 feet of Mt. Kilimanjaro in June, raising nearly $3 every step, or a total of $51,615, to bring our more affordable go! pads to 6,000 girls.
“With the support of investors like you, I was able to climb Kilimanjaro and support SHE in their efforts to decrease gender disparity in education, create jobs, debunk stereotypes, and accelerate the path towards sustainable social change. Thank you!” – Bella Wiener
GLOBAL SOURCING COUNCIL 3S AWARDS
We are grateful that the Global Sourcing Council recognized our impact-driven sourcing as a 3S Awardee. The receipt of this award brought SHE into the company of sustainability leaders such as Ben and Jerry’s and Microsoft.
2015 TECH AWARD FINALIST
SHE was a Top 5 finalist in the “Sobrato Organization Economic Development Award” category of The Tech Awards 2015. The Tech Awards honors international innovators who are applying technology to confront humanity’s most urgent challenges.
Partnering To Scale
Our collaboration with Johnson and Johnson kicked into high gear in 2015. We worked with employees
from the Global Strategic Design Office, External Alliances and Innovation, and Supply Chain teams to
help us amplify our growth and impact. Johnson and Johnson’s technical assistance will enable SHE to
increase our production capacity tenfold, drive down our production costs by 30%, and design a highly
replicable production model that can be replicated globally.
NGOs and Ministries Supporters
Your support enables SHE to continue to achieve our mission. You make it possible for us to take advantage of opportunities that will catalyze our growth and ensure our sustainability. Because of you, we are able to expand our supply chain, develop and test new technologies, educate girls and women, increase market demand, and measure the effectiveness of our market-based approach.
Board of Directors
Sheila Hollender, Chair
Our Team grew in a lot of ways. Most notably, we added 3 new team members.