Join our Participation Challenge, find out about DFW Board changes and some remarkable donors, and read about new Peace Corps' Let Girls Learn Projects funded.
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Today is Giving Tuesday
Join Our Special 10-Day Challenge!

Thank you to everyone who has already made their ONE SPECIAL GIFT to our 13th Month Annual Appeal. We are now over half-way to our 2016 goal of $360,000. Given that one third of donations are typically received in December, we are on track to reach our goal, but we still need your help!
We are having a Participation Challenge again this year, and it starts TODAY — which is Giving Tuesday, a global day dedicated to charitable giving. Our goal is to get 1,000 donations to our 13th Month Annual Appeal in 10 days, from today until Dec. 8.  Last year, 462 donors participated in a similar challenge. We know we can get to 1,000 this year, especially since we have an added incentive!
We are thrilled to share that DFW member Corinne Blakemore will donate $5,000 to our annual appeal if our challenge is successful!  Many of you know Corinne because she has been involved in almost every aspect of DFW over the years. She is currently the Regional Leader for our Central Region as well as Chapter Leader for the IN, South Bend-1 chapter. She has also served on our Grant Selection Committee for more than four years, and has participated in a DFW trip.  We are so grateful for all of Corinne’s contributions to DFW and her passion for helping women and girls.  Let’s make her proud by meeting and exceeding 1,000 donors by Dec. 8!
If you have already donated, thank you!  If not, please make your gift NOW so that it counts toward our Participation Challenge.

DFW Receives Remarkable Donations!

THANK YOU to the following Founders' Circle donors for their very generous gifts:
  • Tara LaRose (Plainwell, MI chapter)  -- $43,000 – the largest single donation received in DFW history!!
  •  Anne Capestrain (IL, Springfield chapter) -- $25,000 donation for the second year in a row!!
  • Linda Byars (GA, Atlanta-6 chapter) -- $10,000 donation for the fourth year in a row!!

13th Month Activities from Coast to Coast

We appreciate every donation and every chapter fundraiser that is organized for the 13th Month Annual Appeal. Click here to read more about how our wonderful chapters and members have been supporting our annual appeal. If your chapter is doing something special for the 13th Month, please email (with a photo if possible) and we will publish it in our next issue.


DFW Board Elects New Chair and Two New Directors

At its November annual meeting, DFW’s Board of Directors elected Susan Stall, previously Vice Chair, as our new Board Chair. Susan succeeds Co-Founder Barb Collins who is retiring as Chair but will remain on the board.  Susan joined DFW's Board in 2012 and has served as Secretary, Treasurer, and Chair of the Finance Committee. She is past Chapter Leader of the SC, Greenville-7 chapter which published DFW's award-winning cookbook, A Decade of Dining.  She also chaired the 10th anniversary celebration in Greenville in 2013.
Two new Directors have also been appointed to our board. Connie Lewin fills the newly-created position of Grantee Stakeholder. She is currently the Director of Strategy for Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE), one of DFW’s past grantees. Sarah Durry has been named Next Generation Stakeholder. Sarah has served as a chapter leader for the GA, Atlanta-1 chapter for more than five years. She has spent most of her career working with organizations that serve women and girls, including Cool Girls Inc. and Women in Technology.

Passing the Baton

DFW Co-Founder and Past Chair Barb Collins shares her thoughts as we “celebrate a succession of leadership in the board chair role.”


Nearly 14 Years and Still Going Strong!

Our founding chapter in Greenville, SC was recently recognized for its long-time service. From Co-Founder Marsha Wallace's birthday dinner in Jan. 2003, many passionate Chapter Leaders and members have kept this chapter vibrant over the years. Much thanks to all of them and a special thank you to current Chapter Leaders Connie Williamson and Cindy Henry.

Stories from Peace Corps Volunteers:
DFW’s Partnership in Action

By Beth Ellen Holimon, Dining for Women President

As we release the second list of projects supported by DFW’s grant to the Peace Corps’ Let Girls Learn Program, DFW President Beth Ellen Holimon reflects on what this important partnership has meant to women and girls and to DFW.

Our Featured Grantee for December:

iACT provides humanitarian action to aid, empower and extend hope to those affected by mass atrocities, creating a world where people are connected and equipped to act. DFW’s featured grant of $49,320 will support the Little Ripples project at the Goz Amer refugee camp in Chad. The program trains and employs refugee women to provide play-based, peacebuilding and culturally-inspired preschool education to young refugee children.

Learn More >>

Our Conversation with Katie-Jay Scott, COO of iACT, is available here.

3 Things You Need to Know about our Featured Grantee

Chad is home to the largest population of refugees from the civil war in Sudan, with over 250,000 people living in camps. Women and children under the age of 18 make up 85 percent of the population in the camps.
Little Ripples is an early childhood education program tailored to children exposed to severe trauma. It has shown to improve the social-emotional, cognitive and health behavior of children, which then allows parents to focus on securing resources and income to provide for their family..
This project will directly benefit 62 women (21 Little Ripples employed early childhood educators and 41 prospective early childhood educators), and indirectly benefit more than 775 female students and caregivers.

Our Sustained Grantee for December:
Shining Hope for Communities

This month, our sustained funding grant supports Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) and its Maternal and Child Health Incentives Program. The program aims to reduce high child morbidity and mortality rates by encouraging mothers to seek regular prenatal, postnatal and child welfare services. This helps ensure positive health outcomes for themselves and their children. DFW’s sustained funding grant to SHOFCO provides $60,000 over three years from November 2015 to 2017.
Learn More >>

The Proven Platter- Sweet Potato and Okra Stew
By Linda McElroy, DFW Recipe Curator and Chapter Leader of WA, Seattle-1

Hello Diners! The Republic of Chad, located in northern Central Africa, is the subject of our focus and our dining destination this month. Okra is one of the most commonly consumed vegetables there. It is used both to thicken sauces and as a vegetable used in preparation of soups and stews. I suppose you either love okra or hate it, but as it happens, I love it! And since I’ve yet to post a recipe calling for okra, I think okra’s time in the spotlight has come.


Let Your Gift Give Back

As you shop for the holidays, don’t forget to start (and perhaps finish!) with DFW’s Marketplace. These are just a few of the gift ideas you can find:
  • Anchal Project’s one-of-a-kind square scarf is handcrafted from two layers of vintage cotton sari. Each piece is held together by a traditional Indian kantha stitch and features the hand-stitched name of each artisan.
  • Child’s Cup Full’s Baby Plaid Dino is handmade with love to support children's cognitive development! Be sure to mention DFW when you check out so we will get 10% of all sales.
  • Each pillow from takes three hours to embroider by hand and is stitched with a traditional motif from the Gaza region that represents pomegranate flowers. Designed and hand stitched by women artists in Zababdeh, West Bank. DFW receives 10 percent of all sales when you select DFW at checkout.
  • Friendship Bridge makes these fashionable clutches using re-purposed huipiles (Mayan women’s blouse) from Nahuala and trimmed with leather. Enter DFW20 as the coupon code at checkout to receive a 10 percent discount, and to have DFW receive 10 percent of sales.
  • All of Symbology's products are made by hand by women artisans who use traditional art techniques. Enter DFW15 as the coupon code at checkout to receive $5 off your total purchase and to have DFW receive 10 percent of sales.

Home Office Holiday Schedule

DFW's home office will be closed for the holidays from
Dec. 26 - 30 so our staff can enjoy time with their families
and a much-needed break!  
We will reopen after the holidays on Monday, Jan. 2.


Congratulations to the MO, Parkville-1 chapter and Chapter Leader Sieglinde Othmer on celebrating five years with DFW.
Members of the CO, Breckenridge-1 chapter put their creativity on display as they painted sugar skulls on rocks at their September dinner. Thanks Lisa Eurich and Abbey Browne for leading this chapter.
Welcome to the MD, Salisbury-1 chapter members, also known as the Sassy Salisbury Gals, who had their first meeting in July. The group is led by Tracy Ritter.
Congratulations to the NY, Rhinebeck-1 chapter and Chapter Leader Grace Levine. The group recently celebrated two years!
DFW had an exhibit at the WorldWideWomen Girls’ Festival in San Francisco on Oct. 15. Thousands of women, girls and their families came out to experience more than 100 activities for girls, including speakers, performances, exhibitors, a sports arena, career mentoring and more. Shown from left is Jena Leventhal, member of the CA, San Francisco-2 chapter and Linda Dougall, Co-Leader of DFW’s West Region.

Grantee Reports Posted

New Chapters Activated

WA, Longview – 1
led by Jerri Patten & Julia Lipke
WA, Spokane Valley – 1
led by Judy Bacon & Cheri Susens
The NJ, Tenafly-1 chapter and Chapter Leaders Judy Manton and Sylvie Meyers recently celebrated their group’s third anniversary. 
Congratulations to the TN, Loudon-1 chapter and Chapter Leaders Dee Lilley, Lori Rostad and Susan Hall-Pinzini. The group celebrated its first anniversary in October. Friends, including TN, Knoxville-1 co-leader Deb Scaperoth, joined in the celebration.
Welcome to the WA, Spokane Valley-1 chapter on its first meeting in October. Congratulations to Chapter Leaders Judy Bacon and Cheri Susens on starting their enthusiastic group.
Congratulations to the IN, South Bend-2 chapter and Chapter Leaders Barb Carmichael and Lois Holm for getting their chapter off to a great start. At their second meeting in October, the group learned about Mali: Becky Lindstrom provided an overview of Women LEAP, Deborah Stevens shared highlights from her son’s three-month visit to Mali, and Megan McClellan described her Peace Corps experience in West Africa.
Many thanks to the OR, Portland-2 Westside chapter and Chapter Leaders Stephanie Sussman and Karen McCune. The group recently celebrated seven years together by holding a white elephant party for DFW’s 13th Month Annual Appeal.


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

Follow DFW on Instagram for program info, recipes, chapter news, and more.

Chapter Anniversaries

1 Year
IL, Springfield - 5
led by Karen Munoz & Denise Church
MI, New Buffalo - 1
led by Becky Borglin
3 Years
CA, Arcata - 1
led by Melinda Pedersen
5 Years
AZ, Phoenix - 7
led by Carol Blonder
OH, Akron – 1
led by Sally Phillips
6 Years
GA, Marietta - 1
led by Susan Scollo & Terri Abraham
NY, Manlius - 1
led by Deborah Monaco & Eileen Perry
7 Years
GA, Roswell - 1
led by Mary Crawley
IL, Arlington Heights - 1
led by Janice Gedmin
OH, Sylvania - 2
led by Kim Whetstone
8 Years
SC, Columbia - 2
led by Susan Hendricks & Janie Kerzan

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