Muna Mohamed, Fartun Weli and Waris Mohamed of Isuroon, an organization promoting the well-being of Somali women.
"What is holding you back from leadership?"

Women ask each other this question a lot. The answers are many and varied. There's institutional politics, prejudice against capable women, distrust and micro-aggressions towards women who have the ambition to lead. But there's also the answer that testifies to women's capacity to be compassionate and effective leaders, fully aware of these obstacles - "Nothing is holding me back. I am ready to be engaged and to engage others, no matter what. Show me how."

Two women leaders and recent Mary's Pence Grants recipients, know the "how" and are working to inspire women to be there for one another as they become leaders in their communities. Fartun Weli is the founder and executive director of Isuroon, an organization that champions health promotion and civic engagement for the Somali women and their communities in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. Nausheena Hussain is the leader of Reviving the Islamic Sisterhood for Empowerment (RISE), a leadership resource that creates a safe space for Minnesotan Muslim women. As stand-alone organizers and as part of a network of Muslim women, they cultivate women's equity from the bottom up.



Svitlana Iukhymovych, St. Joseph Worker, shares her reflections
Grace and Katherine on the Mexican side of the U.S.-Mexico border
Last month, Mary's Pence connected with supporters at the annual SOA Watch Vigil and Convergence. In the years past, this event was held at Fort Benning, a combat training facility that is part of the School of the Americas. This time, the SOA Watch Convergence moved to the U.S.-Mexico border in Nogales, Arizona and Nogales, Sonora, Mexico. I joined Katherine, Grace, and Sr. Pat Rogucki, a former Mary's Pence board member, for this first-time SOA Watch event at the border. From October 7-10, we adventured together and contributed the voice of Mary's Pence to the Convergence. In the shadow of the border (quite literally), the gathering brought up many questions about the plight of refugees and migrants escaping severe hardship in their home countries. 

Help Mary's Pence invest in women!
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Mary's Pence Jewelry
Mary's Pence jewelry makes a great Christmas gift!  Order a pendant, earrings, or a jewelry set featuring the Mary's Pence logo - a symbol of women's solidarity throughout the world.

For a donation of $60 -
Mary's Pence Pendant

For a donation of $40 -
Mary's Pence Earrings

For a donation of $100 -
Mary's Pence Jewelry Set

All jewelry pieces are made of sterling silver, 
perfect as  a gift on any occasion.
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May the whole world
speak together
And feel the peace
of solidarity,
Of one universal voice
Calling out
in love,
To all the voices
and pleas
That go unanswered,
that are not heard,
We hear you,
We love you,
We are with you,
And we share with you
your pain,
We love you.
May the strength
of one voice
Be all of yours,
Of one tear
Be all of yours,
And our song
for Peace
Be heard.

by Nuraini Magnusson

We envision a world where empowered women 

and their communities flourish in solidarity and justice.


Mary's Pence invests in women across the Americas 

by funding community initiatives and fostering 

collaborations to create social change.