RFH clubFrom left: officers Hope Haywood Alexandra Siwulec, Shoshana Swell, and Sarah Turi celebrate the success of the Global Women Empowerment Club during its inaugural year at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional.

Press release from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School

The Global Women Empowerment club at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School enjoyed a highly successful inaugural year,  with many activities and fundraising events benefitting the cause of improving the lives of women around the globe. The organization, founded by rising seniors Hope Haywood and Alexandra Siwulec, along with Social Studies teacher Christie Ferraris, raised over $3,700 in the course of its first year at RFH.

The group’s most recent fundraising event was an infant-themed candy and baked goods sale which raised over $650 for the Eastern Social Welfare Society (ESWS). The ESWS is dedicated to the welfare of orphans and single mothers in South Korea, and with the funds raised, the RFH club was able to become a permanent sponsor of South Korean orphan. To further the group’s  awareness of issues affecting women living in South Korea, Alexandra Siwulec invited Monmouth County resident Eleanor Falcichio to speak with the members of Global Women Empowerment.  She told the RFH students about her experience in adopting through ESWS, and addressed the social stigma surrounding single motherhood and adoption in South Korea.

Additional successful fundraising and awareness events this year included:

• A lollipop sale benefitting Dining for Dignity, which raised $433 in an effort to end human trafficking in New Jersey — the group also communicated by Skype with Kelly Master, the president of the organization, to learn more about how to help deter the growth of this multi-billion dollar industry

• A bake sale that raised $120 for Women Thrive Worldwide, the leading nonprofit organization bringing the voices of women around the world directly to decision-makers in Washington, D.C.

• The sale of bracelets with the message “Education is Empowerment”, which raised over $1000 and allowed Daisy, a teenager living in Uganda, to attend high school for one year through the organization Change a Life Uganda

• A bake sale benefitting Karapatan, a human rights organization, that raised $142 for female victims of the November 2013 typhoon in the Philippines

• The co-sponsoring of a screening of the powerful film “Girl Rising”

• A screening of the film “Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity”, which raised $149 for KIVA, a non-profit organization providing loans to female entrepreneurs in developing countries

Global Women Empowerment plans to continue and expand its efforts to raise funds, spread awareness, and empower women around the globe during the upcoming school year and in those that follow.

“We are thrilled to have had such a successful year and grateful to the support of club members and those that financially supported our fundraising,” said Siwulec.  “We hope to continue to make a difference in the lives of women around the globe next year.”

In addition to Co-Presidents Hope Haywood and Alexandra Siwulec, officers include Annie O’Brien, Shoshana Swell, Sarah Turi, and Payton Wall.