As a corporation, the Avery Dennison Foundation has taken a great interest in assisting in the growth of women and their roles around the world. As with most of its work, the Avery Dennison Foundation and its president Alicia Procello Maddox, have focused their efforts on the women in the developing world. The role of women in under-developed countries is usually that of a second-class citizen. Most aren’t given opportunities, such as education or prosperous work, they are seen as property. But through her work Alicia Procello Maddox is leading the effort to change that. She has led the foundation in its support of the Global Greengrants Fund with a two-year grant.
As part of the grant, the foundation supports seven female-led organizations that are working on issues such as environmental sustainability and women’s empowerment, two of the Foundation’s leading issues. The grant is currently at work on the remote island of Tansin, in northeastern Honduras. Most of the island’s inhabitants are known as the Miskito people. They live in far off villages only accessible by boat or chartered plane. The Miskito community lacks most modern amenities many of us have become accustomed to, and rely mainly on farming in order to survive. As a result of deforestation much of theirfarmland has been destroyed, creating a lot of competition amongst a normally peaceful group of people. In this competition women are often the biggest losers, as they have limited access to land, technology, money, and have no voice in politics.
Because of this grant the Women’s Association of Tansin has been able to teach women about better, more sustainable farming practices, such as crop diversification and even how to better serve the tourism trade. This training has allowed the women of Tansin to gain financial stability, and a sustainablemeans of survival for many years to come.