Our 13th Month Annual Appeal continues, get an update on our 2020 Vision, and join our regional leadership team.
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Our 13th Month Annual Appeal
Have You Said Yes to One Special Gift?

Thank you to everyone who has made their one special gift to our 13th Month Annual Appeal. Every gift helps transform the lives of women and girls and will be used to fund our grants, conduct rigorous screening, vetting and monitoring of our grantees, provide educational materials that foster informed global citizens, launch our grassroots advocacy program, expand our number of chapters, and ultimately help even more women and girls.
As of Oct. 28, we have raised more than $92,000 toward our 2016 goal of $360,000. Last year 2,011 members (25 percent) generously participated in the 13th Month Annual Appeal. This year, we are aiming for 100 percent of members making one additional gift, at whatever level they are able. The DFW Board of Directors continues to be a 100 percent giving board, and our staff is 100 percent giving as well. Just one additional donation by each member will allow us to reach our goal! Whether it is $5 or $5,000.  Every gift counts.
There are many exciting activities and events happening across our chapters for the 13th Month -- from a “Celebrate the Girl” event in Marin County, CA to a fifth anniversary celebration by the three Weavers Way, PA chapters, including a generous $5,000 matching grant from long-time DFW member Karen Rowley. We will share more details and photos from these events and others in our December issue.
In the meantime, if you have not already done so, please make your donation today. It’s easy to give. You can make a donation at your chapter meeting or click on the link below.

2020 Vision Update

By Beth Ellen Holimon, Dining for Women President

In looking at what DFW has achieved towards our 2020 Vision, the pieces that stand out the most over this year are our partnership with the Peace Corps’ Let Girls Learn Program, welcoming the voices of our members into more areas of decision-making than ever before through committees and volunteering, and continuing to present life-changing and inspiring projects and issue education for our members. I’m excited to share a more in-depth look at our achievements.

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DFW Receives Charity Navigator’s 3 Star Rating!

By Beth Ellen Holimon, Dining for Women President

Thank you to all our members who voted to get DFW rated on Charity Navigator! For the first time, DFW is on the list of rated charities with Charity Navigator, which is the world’s largest and most utilized evaluator of charities. There are 1.57 million nonprofits registered in the U.S. and Charity Navigator does not rate all of them, even those eligible to be rated under their criteria. It took our members voting for us to be rated to get on their radar.

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Our Featured Grantee for November:
Amman Imman

Amman Imman: Water is Life empowers and helps preserve Africa’s most vulnerable indigenous people and engages students worldwide as socially conscious leaders. It establishes points of civilization that flourish, beginning with the construction of permanent water sources. Its programs emphasize the role of women and engaging youth as a guiding force for societal stability, optimism and resilience.

DFW’s grant of $49,402 will fund the Herds for Economic Resiliency (HERds) project in Tangarwashane, Niger. This project will loan livestock to economically vulnerable women, provide them with the training to care for them and the infrastructure to create a viable, sustainable program. This will allow the women to sell livestock when necessary to purchase food, clothes, medicine and school supplies.

Learn More >>

Our Conversation with Ariane Kirtley, Founder and Executive Director of Amman Imman, is available here.

3 Things You Need to Know about our Featured Grantee

The indigenous people of Niger’s Azawak region are a nomadic group inhabiting an area plagued by drought. In less than a decade, annual rainfall has dwindled from five months to one month, resulting in a devastating loss of livestock, leaving families without food and economic resources.
The HERds project will directly impact 60 women, 420 children under the age of five and 45 women’s cooperative members who attend training. The livestock are then re-loaned to 60 new women and the impact is repeated.
Since 2008, Amman Imman has secured permanent water sources for 100,000 people and 140,000 animals. As water security improved, its vision grew to include schools, health clinics, commerce, agriculture, livestock and environmental protection programs.

Our Sustained Grantee for November:
Emerge Global

Emerge Global enables girls in Sri Lanka who have survived abuse to become entrepreneurial jewelry designers. This is accomplished through a comprehensive curriculum that emphasizes personal discovery, mentorship and business knowledge, while simultaneously generating savings for their futures. DFW supported Emerge Global as a featured grantee in July 2011. This $60,000 sustained grant, funded over three years from November 2015 to 2017, equips 60 girls per year with the business acumen, life skills and savings needed to lead healthy, self-sufficient lives.
Learn More >>

The Proven Platter- Holiday Appetizer Party
By Linda McElroy, DFW Recipe Curator and Chapter Leader of WA, Seattle-1

Hello Diners! I’ve got lots of good recipes coming your way this month. I thought I’d share with you a tradition that we have started with my group. Every year in either November or December, depending on what month we are meeting, we plan what we call our “holiday appetizer party.” Initially the idea was to bring a favorite appetizer, or bring an appetizer that you were thinking of trying out for the holidays. There is no better audience for feedback than our enthusiastic DFW members!

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New recipes this month:

From the archives:

View all recipes from Niger

DFW Participates in National Peace Corps Conference

In late September, DFW participated in the 2016 Peace Corps Connect Conference in Washington DC. This is the annual conference of the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA), and this year’s event commemorated 55 years of the Peace Corps. DFW sponsored the Sargent Shriver Leadership Luncheon where Board Chair and Co-Founder Barb Collins gave a presentation to congressmen, senators, major donors and other conference VIPs. Also in attendance were the 2016 winners of the Sargent Shriver Award for Distinguished Humanitarian Service: Jennifer Schechter and Kevin Fiori, Returned Peace Corps Volunteers and founders of Health Through Hope, one of DFW’s past grantees.

From left, Beth Ellen Holimon, Barb Collins, Denise Woods, Peggy Smith, and Peg Hirsh.

During the conference, DFW President Beth Ellen Holimon also spoke to a gathering of NPCA affiliate groups from across the U.S. In addition, DFW had a display in the event’s exhibit hall. Much thanks to Peggy Smith, Yasamin Brown, Denise Woods, Tracey Yensen, Fabie Holiniaina, and Peg Hirsh for staffing our display and sharing info on DFW.

Join our Regional Leadership Team

Our volunteer Regional Leaders gathered in Atlanta, GA, Sept 23-25. Regional Leaders come together with home office staff annually to connect, network, learn and share best practices in their regions – and, yes, have a little fun too! These volunteers put in many hours for the benefit of our organization, and we all owe them a huge THANK YOU!

Are you interested in becoming more engaged with DFW and other chapter leaders and members in your region? Want to help DFW grow? We are looking for a number of volunteer Regional Leaders across the country and invite you to apply.

Our Regional Leaders are crucial to the success of DFW. They are responsible for the overall management of their region, including oversight of a team of volunteers, development and support of regional strategies to grow new chapters, retaining existing chapters and increasing awareness of DFW and its mission. If you would like more information on becoming a Regional Leader, please visit our Volunteer page and/or contact Wendy Frattolin at


Welcome to Our New DFW Staff Member

The next time you call the DFW home office, you may hear a new voice. Elizabeth Anderson has joined our staff as Administrative Coordinator.  Elizabeth will be our frontline person on the phone and with our general email account. She will provide administrative support to President Beth Ellen Holimon and DFW’s senior directors as well as DFW’s Board, and will assist in donor stewardship communications and management.
Elizabeth is a recent graduate from Anderson University in Anderson, SC where she earned a BA in Christian Ministry. Most recently, she spent time in Washington, DC working with the International Justice Mission as Gift Processing Coordinator. She enjoys reading, yoga, and spending time with family. Elizabeth is excited to use her supportive skills to help DFW achieve its mission of empowering women and girls to reduce poverty in the developing world.

Home Office Holiday Schedule

As the holiday season draws near, we want to let you know that our home office will be closed on the following days so our staff can enjoy time with their families and a much-needed break!  
Nov. 24 and 25
Dec. 26 – 30
We will reopen after the holidays on Monday, Jan. 2.

Holiday Shopping? Let Us Help!

Your holiday gifts can spread joy far beyond the recipient. Consider shopping on DFW’s Marketplace – our cause marketing program supports DFW and skilled artisans around the world. Here’s a great way to get ahead on your list:
  • Author (and DFW Chapter Leader) Betsy Teutsch has generously offered to donate all proceeds from sales of her book, 100 Under $100, One Hundred Tools for Empowering Global Women, to Dining for Women through Dec. 31, 2016.  She has also discounted the book price to $19.95 for orders through this link until Dec. 31. In her book, Betsy shares 100 successful, proven ways to fight poverty, including actions individuals can take to help. It features several DFW grantees, and each book will be autographed by the author. 
  • BeadforLife’s Transformation Collection honors the women who have graduated from BeadforLife’s Street Business School. Each piece represents an essential element to creating a self-sustaining business. Enter DFW as the coupon code at checkout and we will receive 20% of the proceeds.
  • Host a BeadforLife Marketplace. BeadforLife provides everything you need for an unforgettable event filled with music, memories and major impact! You can also host online, so you can impact lives with a single click.
  • Mayan Lace Necklace is a great gift for a woman who appreciates the craftsmanship of handmade jewelry and needs an elegant piece for evening wear.
  • MayaWorks’ Judaica Collection offers a wide variety of fair trade items. Find yarmulkes, prayer shawls, a challah cover and much more.
  • MayaWork’s Christmas Ornament Collection includes items destined to become family heirlooms and treasured gifts for friends. Looking for corporate gifts? Beaded star ornaments, handmade by the Maya Tzutujil from Santiago Atitlán Guatemala, are a lovely addition to any home.
  • For all MayaWorks products, enter DFW as the coupon code at check-out to receive a 10% discount and to have DFW receive 10% of the proceeds.

Illinois Chapter Celebrates 10 Years Together

The IL, La Grange Park-1 chapter thrives on member commitment. Founded by Barbara Harris and Carole Liss, Barbara still serves as the chapter’s leader. She helped found the chapter to honor her late mother and brother in 2005.
“I have a deep commitment to DFW and the chapter members refuse to let go of their chapter,” Barbara said. “Many have been members since the first meeting. In 2015, we changed from every month to every other month. This change has really worked for everyone.”
At each meeting, the group begins with wine and appetizers and then they learn about the featured grantee. Dinner follows, with the main dish prepared by the host and everything else brought by members. Hosting duties rotate among the members. Currently, about eight to ten people attend each meeting from a roster of 18. Aside from regular meetings, the group participated in a retail fundraiser, with a percentage of sales benefiting DFW.
Over the years, the group has used friendship and compassion to help change lives. “I think the secret is in the relationship between the chapter leader and the members and being able to share the passion passed down from (DFW co-founders) Marsha (Wallace) and Barb (Collins),” she said. “We all shared a bit of ourselves over the years and we care about each other and the women we serve.”
L to R: Sharon Hake, PA, Kennett Square-1 member;  Pauline Brittingham, Chapter Leader, PA, Kennett Square-1; DFW Co-Founder, Marsha Wallace;  Peggy Smith and Judy Christensen – Co-Leaders of the DE, Newark-1 chapter.

DFW in Delaware: From One Chapter to Eight

Our first Delaware chapter began in 2011 and has led to the creation of seven more chapters over the past five years. Together, these eight chapters have raised $88,900 to date. On Sept. 27, the eight Delaware chapters gathered to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the state’s first, founding chapter. Almost 100 people attended, along with DFW’s co-founder, Marsha Wallace, to celebrate the chapters’ accomplishments, talk about future plans for DFW and reflect on the organizations they have supported. It was a wonderful event and a true reflection of the Delaware members’ commitment to making life better for women and girls around the world!

Grantee Updates

Grant Applications -- We received a record number of applications for our fall grant cycle that closed on Oct. 24th. A total of 137 applications were received for six grants that will be awarded in the second half of 2017. This is the highest number of applications that DFW has ever received and compares to the previous grant cycle when we received 90 applicants.

Peace Corps’ Let Girls Learn – We will be recording a Google Hangout in early November with several Peace Corps volunteers serving in Mongolia who received funds through DFW’s $100,000 partnership grant. This will be an opportunity for you to hear about how your donations were put into action. More info and a link to the recording will be shared in the December issue of The Dish.
Also, don’t forget that Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) are available to speak at your chapter meetings. Why not invite an RPCV who served in the same country as one of our featured grantees? Be sure to plan in advance as requests must be made at least four weeks prior to your chapter meeting. If you would like to schedule an RPCV speaker, please complete this online Registration Form.
Etta Projects – Etta Projects, our February 2017 featured grantee, will train local villagers in Bolivia to become Health Promoters who serve as first responders, save lives, and advocate for improved health outcomes. This training was scheduled to begin in March 2017 once Etta Projects received the funds from DFW. However, Etta Projects has received an unexpected donation that pays for a whole year of training, allowing them to start the two-year training right now. The DFW grant will now be used for the second year of training. This changes the direct beneficiaries from 25 to 50 and expands the number of villages impacted so the indirect beneficiaries increase from 1,329 to 5,361.
Global Grassroots – DFW’s August 2012 featured grantee recently announced a new, exclusive focus on women’s WASH (Water Access, Sanitation and Hygiene) issues, recognizing the significant impact of water on women’s lives and following a decade of experience in this field. DFW’s featured grant funded Global Grassroots’ Academy for Conscious Change in Rwanda, an 18-month incubator program that launched social change ventures designed by and for underserved women. We applaud Global Grassroots’ continued efforts to effect change in one of the world’s greatest areas of need.


Happy fifth anniversary to OH, Sylvania-3 chapter, led by Gail Dunn.
Welcome to the TN, Nashville-1 chapter, which held its first meeting on Sept. 7. Chapter Leaders are Tracey Levine and Skyler Levine.
Many thanks to Chapter Leaders Linda Duffy and Sue Dagenais who staffed a table at September’s “Opportunity Africa” conference held by U.S. Senator Chris Coons in Wilmington, Delaware. They were able to introduce more than 100 conference participants to DFW, many of whom are from countries where DFW grantees work. Pictured: Linda Duffy, Chapter Leader for PA, Kennett Square-2, and a representative from East Africa.
Congratulations to the AL, Dadeville-1 chapter on its first anniversary. The chapter is led by Linda Bodine and Cindy Pierce. The group celebrated with Bolivian-style Arroz a la Valenciana, salad and leche asada.


Please send photos of your chapter milestones, meetings or special events to:

Follow DFW on Instagram for program info, recipes, chapter news, and more.
It’s a family affair once a year when the WI, Brookfield-1 chapter includes spouses in its chapter meeting, sharing good food, good company and the impact of DFW’s giving. Chapter Leaders are Wendy Petersson and Amy Dexheimer.
Congratulations to members of the OH, Medina-1 chapter and Chapter Leader Marguerite Frey. This couples’ chapter celebrated five years together in September.
Members of the CA, Oakland-2 chapter and Chapter Leaders Rachel McQueen, Mary McQueen and Christine McQueen celebrated five years in September. Congratulations!
The SC, Greenville-7 chapter, led by Jean Helwing and Margaret Paylor, recently celebrated its sixth anniversary. The chapter, founded by Susan Stall and Thayer Fleming, has a roster of 95 members and approximately 40 active members. Our thanks to this vibrant chapter!

New Chapters Activated

CA, Menlo Park - 1
led by Gwen Faulkner, Kathleen Jensen, & Patrisia Spezzaferro
IL, Quincy - 2
led by Tammy Niemann & Denette Kuhlman
IN, South Bend - 2
led by Barb Carmichael & Lois Holm
NJ, Jersey City - 1
led by Amanda Goldberg & Vasuki Neelagiri
TN, Nashville - 1
led by Tracey Levine & Skyler Levine

Chapter Anniversaries

1 Year
FL, Cedar Key - 1
led by Peg Hall
VT, Burlington - 1
led by Cece Watkins and Minta Trivette
2 Years
DC, Washington - 7
led by Allison Crouch
MI, Rochester Hills - 1
led by Alice Seppanen & JoAnne Hornbeck
OR, Portland - 13
led by Meg Roland
TN, Knoxville - 2
led by Lori Johnson & Jenifer Plageman-Davis
3 Years
AZ, Goodyear - 2
led by Jane Richards & Elaine DeKruif
CA, Altadena - 1
led by Christine Meadows
CA, Santa Barbara - 3
led by Julia Davis & Stephanie Logan
CT, West Hartford - 1
led by Alison Rogers-McCoy & Claire Burchill
4 Years
OH, Canal Fulton - 1
led by Cindy Bagocius
OH, Hudson - 1
led by Tamara Peterson & Rachel Peterson
PA, Kennett Square - 2
led by Linda Duffy
WI, Madison - 1
led by Erin Pollocoff
5 Years
OH, Holland - 1
led by Cynthia Beekley
OR, Bend - 1
led by Leslie Weaver
PA, Philadelphia - 5
led by Judith Tindall & Cara Herold
6 Years
CA, San Jose - 6
led by Laurie Flesher & Gail Buckley
MI, Plainwell - 1
led by Nora O'Connor Wade & Rebecca Bigelow
NY, Oneonta - 1
led by Eve Rabbiner
SC, Isle of Palms – 1
led by Cynthia Carpenter
7 Years
TX, Houston - 3
led by Francine Fleming & Jerrie Earthman
8 Years
CA, Berkeley - 1
led by Lindsay Miller
CA, San Jose - 1
led by Mary Force & Rebecca Ulrich
CO, Colorado Springs - 1
led by Jandy Sharp Barentine

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