Women Like Us…

Yesterday afternoon I had the honor of attending the Women Like Us Foundation Afternoon Tea and Speaker Series Annual Fundraiser.  What a wonderful event!  Many of the ladies in attendance took the “Tea” theme to heart and were dressed in their finest…right down to the pearls, hats and gloves!  More important than the fashion at the event was the message.

For those of you not familiar with the Women Like Us Foundation, it is the passion of a great woman named Linda Rendlemen, author of Women Like Us: Real Stories and Strategies for Living Your Best Life.  This annual  inspirational tea and speaker series was created by Linda and Dr. Sally Brown Bassett to expand on the theme of the common threads which run through women’s lives. Our stories are singular, but our passions are shared. After the initial success of the book, the Women Like Us Foundation was created to inspire and empower women and under-served girls to make a difference globally and locally.

The speakers were fantastic, first up was Madeline DiNono, Executive Director of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and her message was very thought provoking – I had never thought about it, but am now looking at television and movies in a bit different light.  Changing the Status Quo:  Female Characters in Popular Family Films and Television very enlightening!  Madeline Di Nonnois the Executive Director of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, the only research based non-profit working with the entertainment and media community to improve gender diversity in children’s entertainment through research based programs. More on Madeline Di Nonno and Geena Davis Institute.

Our Keynote Speaker was Jessica Fellowes, Author of The Chronicles of Downton Abbey.  While I’ve not watched the program, enough people I know are completely enthralled!  She spoke about The Women of Downton, Women of Today.  Jessica is the #1 best-selling author of The World of Downton Abbey—which features new insights into the stories and characters, social historical context, sketches, on-set photos, and research for the production team—and its follow up, The Chronicles of Downton Abbey—an evocative combination of story, history, and behind-the-scenes drama from one of the world’s most popular and beloved shows. She is the niece of Julian Fellowes, the creator, screen writer and executive producer of the popular PBS series.  Jessica spoke on the historcial evolvement of women and the importance of evolvement in teen girls as it relates to future accomplishments in our world. Click here for more on Jessica Fellowes.

This event was amazing, many of the young women being served by this organization were in the audience and such and inspiration.  While facing my own financial struggles right now, I gave a small gift to the organization and was rewarded by winning one of the door prizes!  This is not why I gave, but am so grateful to be a recipient.  There were no programs like this available in my small hometown I know how much I would have benefited all those years ago and much of their program I have tried to teach or be to my beautiful nieces…I hope some sliver has been as meaningful to them as what I experienced yesterday.

Linda, continue your good works, you and yours are making a huge difference in so many lives.

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Vicki Reed

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