High Water Women Initiatives
At High Water Women, we advance our goals of enriched education for at-risk youth, relieving the impact of family poverty and economic empowerment for women through:
- Volunteerism: We provide a wide range of volunteer activities to engage our members in the work of 15 nonprofit partner organizations. To learn more about our volunteer opportunities click here.
- Programs: We also have four specially-developed High Water Women programs which align with our goals of increasing volunteerism and increasing philanthropic giving among our membership:
- Board Match: We help build the capacity of nonprofits by carefully matching their needs with the areas of expertise of our membership through our board service matching program.
- Philanthropy Leadership Education: We conduct educational programs for members and corporate partners to increase their knowledge and level of involvement in philanthropy.
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In today’s complicated financial world, it is increasingly important for young people to learn the fundamentals of earning, saving and investment. It is equally important to understand the implications of debt and to avoid the pitfalls of unscrupulous lenders and phishers and other predatory practices. To address this issue, we joined forces with financial industry legend Muriel Siebert in 2009 to launch the Muriel Siebert High Water Women Campaign for Financial Literacy. The objective of the program is to teach low-income teens how to manage money responsibly and to lay the groundwork for a more secure financial future.
The curriculum used in the program was developed by the Siebert Foundation for youth 13-21yrs. to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to participate in the banking system, avoid predatory lenders, manage debt, avoid bad credit, understand taxes, and to budget and spend wisely. Because these essential skills are not included in the school-day curriculums for most NYC public school students, the High Water Women financial literacy program presents a unique opportunity for students to learn about personal finance in after-school and community-based settings. See prgram one-sheet
HWW works with program providers under the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development, the New York Public Library and nonprofit social service and educational groups to identify after-school and community-based sites for the program. We recruit and train volunteers, mostly from the financial services industry and law firms, and match them with program sites to provide this valuable instruction to hundreds of low-income teens throughout New York City. High Water Women offers this instructional program at no cost to our organizational partners and program sites.
The curriculum is taught in eight weekly sessions (we can also provide a four session module) generally in late afternoons and early evenings. There are three to four volunteers assigned to each program site who share teaching responsibilities with two volunteers scheduled for each session. To prepare volunteers for the program HWW provides three hours of training in the curriculum and tips for teaching teen audiences. Volunteers are provided with curriculum materials and classroom supplies, and supported during their volunteer assignments by other experienced volunteers and HWW staff. Incentives such as $25 gift cards and completion certificates are offered to students who complete the program. HWW developed questionnaires for students and volunteers to complete at the conclusion of each program. This feedback helps HWW assess and improve the program for volunteers and for students.
Sites where High Water Women volunteers have taught the program:
115th St. Library; AlianzaDyckman Cornerstone Program; Betances Cornerstone Program; Vision Urbana/ PS134; Chatham Square Library; Children's Village Cornerstone Program; Chinese American Planning Council; Columbus Library; Cornelia Connelly Center; Diaspora Community Services; Eastchester Gardens Cornerstone Program; FEDCAP; Fort Washington Library; Friends of the Children; Good Shepherd Services; Grand Central Library; Grand Street Settlement NDA Program; Hamilton Grange Library; Hispanic Family Services; HS of Economics and Finance; Jacob Riis Cornerstone Program; Metropolitan HS; Mott Haven Library; New York Harbor HS; NYC Summer Youth Employment Program; Parkchester Library; Partnership with Children; Scan Johnson Cornerstone Program; School of the Future; St. Ignatius Hunt’s Point; Sunnyside Community Services; The Mary Louis Academy; The Teak Fellowship; UA Institute of Math & Science; University Settlement Beacon Program; West Farms Library; WHEDCo MS 218; YWCA Independence HS.
To date, the program has been implemented in more than 40 after-school and community-based sites where150 volunteer instructors have taught financial literacy to more than 1500 students.
Financial Literacy instruction makes a big difference in the lives of the students who complete the program, and we will continue to expand our volunteer efforts to reach greater numbers of students and young adults in multiple venues across the city. For further information please contact FinLit@highwaterwomen.org
In 2006, HWW began exploring volunteer opportunities for its members interested in fostering a connection between private-sector volunteerism and microfinance institutions. With volunteers who bring professional expertise in finance, risk management and investments, we have pioneered a model that helps microfinance institutions reach sustainability. The HWW microfinance team is a recognized thought and training leader. Microfinance volunteers have designed groundbreaking microfinance projects in partnership with leading global microfinance networks to foster a connection between private sector volunteerism and microfinance institutions (MFI). Our work focuses on assisting MFI networks by developing and presenting comprehensive training materials. Launched in 2011, our Global Risk and Transformation Consultancy for MFIs partners with Grameen Foundation, Deutsche Bank, Women’s Trust and Oikos Credit to aid organizations in Ghana, Colombia, Philippines and Liberia. Expanding on its work in microfinance, in the fall of 2013, HWW will hold a thought leadership Symposium on Impact Investing for Family Offices, Endowments and Foundations and other investors. see program one-sheet
- Developing a Master Class on Microfinance: Introductory Module for Grameen Foundation USA to use to introduce the microfinance industry to private sector bankers who are interested in volunteering for Grameen’s Bankers Without Borders™ program. This basic training module has already trained 1,000 volunteers and staff.
- Designing training modules for Grameen in Treasury Management and Investor Readiness and engaging in training Grameen staff and microfinance affiliates in understanding and implementing these concepts.
- Working with Women’s World Banking on a module in Managing Currency Risk which will also be directed at their MFI network.
- With partners Grameen Foundation, Deutsche Bank, Women’s Trust and Oikos Credit, pro bono consultancies for organizations in Ghana, Colombia, Philippines and Liberia.
- Assisting our nonprofit partner “Count Me In” by evaluating business plans and loan applications from women entrepreneurs.
- Supporting social and economic empowerment of underprivileged women in the developing world by making grants to partnering MFIs.
We host ongoing seminars featuring guest experts in the microfinance field, as well as information sessions and donor events to promote awareness, volunteerism and capital markets support for microfinance. Our members have visited Haiti, Ghana, Togo and Benin at their own expense and will continue to travel to these countries and others, to meet with local affiliates of microfinance institutions and government officials, to provide training and determine how we can best continue to contribute to their success.
We believe the expertise of our members can make an important contribution to the microfinance industry in the area of governance and are conducting research and developing a business plan to launch this new project.
We invite volunteers with specialized knowledge in banking and capital markets to work on microfinance projects. For more information on getting involved contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Our yearly Back-to-School Backpack Drive directly benefits at-risk elementary and high school students living in New York City and the tri-state area by providing a fully-supplied backpack to start the new school year. Our all-volunteer fundraising committee raises up to $100,000 annually and secures in-kind donations allowing us to assemble thousands of backpacks for youth who are homeless, living in foster care and living in poverty. Our Backpack Drive nonprofit partners tell us that this simple act helps kids understand that they can take responsibility for learning and succeeding in school. Since the Backpack Drive began in 2005, we have provided backpacks to more than 20,000 children in need.
Volunteer opportunities for the 2013 Backpack Drive will begin next April.
If you are interested in joining our year-round Fundraising Committee., please contact email@example.com
Donate to support the annual Backpack Drive
Each December, we fulfill the holiday wishes of more than 500 children in need in New York City. Through generous contributions from our members and supporters, and through the hard work of our volunteers, we respond to letters shared with us by our nonprofit partners. We not only buy and deliver the special gift requested directly by the children, but also more practical gifts suggested by their parents.
If you are interested in volunteer opportunities for the 2013 Secret Santa Drive please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Donate now to support the Secret Santa Drive