“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”
– Martin Luther King Jr.,
In the words of such great humanitarians, the joy of doing something for those in need is unparalleled. They were determined with their work and left generations inspired with it. The World Humanitarian Day marks a tribute to such people who have thrived throughout their lives for human welfare.
Nonprofits are the leading workforce for humanitarian activities in the world. And women make up for 73% of them in the USA. It is an era that is witnessing women as the leaders in all spheres, thus, this year we celebrate the #WomenHumanitarians in our society. We bring to you the top female philanthropists to follow this year.
Christina Jimenez Moreta took birth in Ecuador and moved to the USA in her teenage as an undocumented immigrant. She started her career as a social worker assistant and later decided to work in activism after experiencing educational barriers as an undocumented immigrant. Early on in her career she created multiple awareness groups.
She was one of the recipients of the MacArthur Fellows Program in 2017. The same year, she was awarded the Freedom From Fear Award.
In 2008, she joined the Drum Major Institute and worked on immigration policy. While she was still at Drum Major, she co-founded United We Dream, an organisation that advocates for undocumented immigrants. Her organisation played a played a pivotal role in influencing Obama’s 2012 executive action to protect young undocumented immigrants.
Caryl M. Stern is an American author, child advocate, civil and human rights activist, and non-profit executive. Stern joined the U.S. Fund for UNICEF in 2006 as COO and served as acting president for a short time before assuming the role of president and CEO in May 2007.
In this role, she advocated for continued U.S. Government support of UNICEF and headed the organization’s efforts to raise awareness and revenue for UNICEF’s efforts to aid children affected by disasters including the 2010 Haiti earthquake, the 2011 East Africa drought, and the current Ebola crisis. During her tenure, the U.S. Fund’s revenues have increased from $372,131,340 in FY 2007 to $606,869,535 in FY 2014.
Fern Shepard Fern Shepard has over 30 years of experience in the environmental community. She has worked on issues ranging from securing threatened and endangered species habitat to protecting children and at-risk populations from lead contamination and dangerous pesticides. Fern also serves on Earthjustice’s Board of Trustees and is a mother of three.
In a world that is facing mass extinction of species, enormous climate change activities, adulteration of food, Shepard stands stall among the biggest environmentalists this world needs the most today. Fern joined Rachel’s Network in 2016 as it implements its five-year strategic plan Vision 2020. They plan to promote women leadership in different systems of power, bringing solutions to the world’s biggest threats and challenges, and increasing efficiency of the organisation.
Sarah Bruno was named one of the “7 Inspiring Nonprofit Women to Watch in 2018”. She is the Executive Director of the Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN). She guides the organisations with events and administration. She and her organisation are dedicated solely to preparing women in college for public policy leadership roles.
Before joining PLEN, Sarah helped nonprofit organisations improve their operations and strategies.
Through PLEN, students meet with female leaders in Congress, courts, federal agencies, the private sector, policy research, advocacy organizations and the media to be mentored and taught about roles they can pursue.
MacKenzie Besos recently signed the Giving Pledge after becoming one of the richest women in the world. Signing the pledge means that the founder and chief executive of Amazon, has promised to give away at least half her $36.6bn (£28.4bn) fortune. A novelist and the founder of the anti-bullying group Bystander Revolution said that she had “a disproportionate amount of money to share” and wanted to work hard in giving till her bucket is empty.
In a recent event on International Women’s Day in Washington D.C she said: “Each of us has the potential to change the world. Ordinary women, who work hard each day to take care of their families, are also bringing change and innovation within their communities.”
MacKenzie did not set out which causes she intended to donate to, but in the past she has supported marriage equality, action against homelessness, college scholarships for undocumented immigrants, as well as research on cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
In the words of Anne Frank,
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world”,
we hope, this Humanitarian Day inspires many more of those who wish to make this world a better place.