While most of the world seems to have forgotten about Bosnia and Herzegovina after the end of the Bosnian War in 1993, Women for Women International has continued to assist the women of the region in rehabilitating their communities. The War left the region with very little infrastructure, more than half of all the schools and houses damaged or destroyed, more than 100,000 dead, and a population of women who had seen years of widespread rape, sexual slavery, and forced impregnation. Women for Women began immediately with a program of educating and training local women, and in addition the organization has given more than $3.6 million in microcredit loans in order to assist the women in rebuilding their societies.
In addition to their work in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Women for Women International has worked in countries such as Rwanda, Colombia, and Iraq and has distributed over $25 million in microcredit loans. The organization is funded through donations of other women throughout the world who agree to sponsor a woman for $27 USD per month. Women for Women International was recently awarded the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize.
Compiled from: “Rebuilding Bosnia and Herzegovina One Woman at a Time – Women for Women International Reaches Out to Those Affected by Conflict,” Drea Knufken, Women News Network, 8 June 2007.