Tribute to Women

Student Movement of Real Change: Celebrating women around the world this Mother’s Day

Dan Armanios shares his mother’s inspiring story May 8, 2009

Filed under: Personal Stories — smrctributetowomen @ 9:22 am
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Daniel Armanios joined SMRC for its inaugural Global Development Internship in Manyeleti, South Africa in 2007. He produced a textbook for rural education in Africa to teach math and science to high school students. The students he tutored had a 100% pass rate on the national exams. He is a Truman and Rhodes Scholar, and plans to pursue his PhD next year.

My mother taught me change often comes in small packages but are no less significant…

In life, we often come upon those rare individuals that have the unique mixture of a will to preserve, an intellect with foresight, and an energy that inspires. For those of us who have the even rarer fortune to have those individuals as family, public service often becomes a lifestyle construed as easy. This is a reminder to me that change is not something that happens casually. (more…)


Doris Mashego of Uta, South Africa May 6, 2009

Doris Mashego is from Uta, South Africa. She has raised 3 children as a single mother while managing the community’s nursery school and fulfilling her role as its headmaster and teacher. The story of a single, working mother of 3 has become common for our generation; however, Doris’ story is unique. Watch the video below to learn more!


A Forgotten Glass Ceiling: A Safe Drink of Water May 5, 2009

Filed under: Articles — smrctributetowomen @ 6:04 pm
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Below is an excerpt from an article published by friends of SMRC at Water Advocates. Their argument focuses on the incredible burden that girls and women face in collecting water for their families.

There is a photograph that travelers inevitably take when they go to a developing country — a picture of a woman carrying a large container of water on her head. The woman’s posture is ramrod straight, the envy of runway models everywhere, and her face rarely betrays the amount of effort and strength this task involves. Most times this photo is taken because it is a stunning and moving image of a woman’s strength and beauty. Read the full article here.


From Andrea Calderon Leal to Clarita Leal May 1, 2009

Filed under: Personal Stories — smrctributetowomen @ 5:14 pm
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When I was asked to write about my Mom, I wanted to write about her accomplishments, as the founder of “Alejandrito Corazon” a nonprofit that she and my dad started two months after losing her second son, Alejandro, my brother, back in 1990.

I can hardly remember those days, I was 8 years old, but I know what it is like having a fear that life changing in front of you, fast. My parents crumbled, everything was different after that day, my house, my city, my school, my friends, my family… I was different too.

Now, 20 years after I can see how the courage and bravery emerged from my Mom, and she embarked on a new endeavor, unknown of course, because she had never worked before in the social sector, helping children with heart disease, helping other mothers, like her…

Her strength has been a life example for me, something that I honestly believe all women should have. The capacity to overcome our problems and imagine that the best is yet to come, even if we have lost the most valuable people in life or lost our way. This was always her example to me.
Whenever I think about the effort that she had to make, day after day, to get up and reinvent herself, her mission, I become more convinced that independence is a principle that we have to decide, consciously, but not only about our jobs or finances, but about everything that allow us to enjoy life.

Nowadays, I am working in SMRC because I finally understood that my passion is to serve the community and give something back. However, I know that the first person who taught me to think about others, to help, and to see potential in every opportunity no matter how insignificant it may seem, was my mom, Clarita.

Today, I only want to express my gratefulness to her for raising me with all her love.