(Thanks to Beverly Hammons (Ecuador 71-73) for this video reference)
Melinda Gates, wife of Bill Gates, has written a book, The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World, on her life and work with women around the world. She discusses the book and her experiences working in the Developing World. Empowering women and girls is a continuing program focus for Peace Corps. For so many RPCVs, especially women, Gates’ experience and the concerns of the women with whom she talked and worked, will seem very familiar.
More than fifty years ago, as a Peace Corps Health Education Volunteer, I would give “charlas”, little talks about health to women in my rural community. After the talk, I would always ask what would they like to know. The question varied, but always the same concern. As one woman said, so eloquently,: “I want to keep the children I have, alive, and I do not want to have any more children.” Sadly, there were few resources, then, to help.
Her wish echos through time. Melinda Gates in the video shows how the Gates Foundation began to help. I am so glad the Foundation has the resources that I only wish were available so long ago.