See pictures of them and more about this at https://sites.google.com/view/stories-truth-transformation/speakers
August 7, 2021, “PROJECT UPLIFT: My Motivation," gave an opportunity for about 20 females and one male, Brother Patrick Tumwine, CSC, an educational leader from Uganda now in the Ph.D. Program in the UIW Dreeben School of Education to gather in the UIW International Conference Center. Dr. Allison Buck had continued our relationship with a Women's Global Connection friend. We were delighted to see Hildah (Claire) Nyongesa and girls of the Chango Secondary school which is located within Vihiga County, Kenya, near the Majengo Market. Lydia, Capadonna, Millicent, Lynne, Vallary, Sentrine, Linah, Melvin, Knight, and Lavender.
Also joining us online, through the friendship of Brother Patrick, leaders in Holy Cross Lakeview Senior Secondary School, located in Jinja District, Eastern Uganda. They are generously giving their time to mentor their girls participating in the global leadership program this year. They are Father Prosper Atukwatse-Mukama, CSC, Deputy Principle in charge of administration and Mr. Emmanuel Ijonai, Director of Studies.
We also had some San Antonio friends and the outstanding guest speakers, Judge Rosie Speedlin Gonzalez, San Antonio City Council Woman Shirley Gonzalez, and Michelle McWilliams. UIW graduate student Jennifer Stuart worked on the program planning with Mayra Carbajal Levy and Yesenia Yafout Caloca who spoke and gave models for young women.
Brother Patrick wrote, “It was a wonderful day to be with you all with such uplifting presentations and engaged discussions. I am honored to be part of this awesome community of friends. God bless you all.”
Mayra Carbajal Levy, Program Specialist the UIW Ettling Center explained a little of her rich experience work experience and the multicultural gifts she brings. She has worked with CASA Child Advocates San Antonio “insuring every child’s voice is heard. CASA supports children and families involved in the child welfare system. Our volunteers advocate for the best interest of a child and make informed recommendations for the child’s physical and emotional well-being to the judge.” Mayra, as both someone with Mexican-American understanding growing up in Del Rio on the Rio Grande border and someone with interfaith understanding married to an Israeli Jew, is a leader helping people listen and grow.
Yesenia Caloca Yafout and Brother Patrick converse about Africa during a break.
Displaying the bags made in the service project which will be given to Lemonade Circle.
Content unfolded on gratitude, knowing our government, self-reflection in light of our names, and doing a service project of re-cycling a tee-shirt to make a bag for people using public transportation. The Lemonade Circle led by Brandi Coleman, UIW Education Department, will be given these to share.
Judge Rosie Speedlin Gonzalez emphasized the importance of service to community. She has devoted her career as an attorney to obtaining fairness and justice for the disenfranchised and the voiceless and continues to be committed to ensuring that women have a seat at the policy making table. She has been awarded by many groups and the PRIDE Center nominated her for the San Antonio Women’s Hall of Fame.
Former Councilwoman Shirley Gonzalez just completed, the longest amount of time allowed in that position representing District 5, the West and near South sides of San Antonio. On the council, she chaired several committees for Planning and Land Development, Transportation and Mobility, and authored the City’s Equity Budget policy requiring allocations based on need. This is a process for investing in those areas of the inner city which were neglected for decades.
Sister Martha Ann Kirk reminded her of June 20, 2019, the first SA City Council session with the newly elected majority of city councilwomen. Lauren Gonzalez and Selena Casanova, ECCLS student assistants; Casey Ogechi Iwuagwu, President of the UIW Pre-Law Society; Nicole Foy, WGC Interim Executive Director; Tamarra Mencey, WGC Director of Administration; Erin Jaques, WGC Summer Fellow from Leadership in Educational Equity; and Sister Martha Ann presented each of the female leaders a WGC Alternative Giving Certificate indicating that in her honor and in gratitude for her public service a woman in Tanzania or Kenya would receive a dozen hens to develop a family business.
Shirley Gonzalez remembered that day and her delight with that gift. She went on to speak of her experience on the council when they changed to a women majority. The women understood how it felt to be “spoken over as women.” Though on the council they might express different points of view, they listened. They worked for the common good paying attention to different voices.
Mary and Joan Labay Marquez, Gabriella, Mary, Elizabeth and Ana Vallor.
Dr. Ana Vallor, Chair of the UIW Biology Department who attended with her three daughters, shared reflection on her name and story.
Dr. Joan Labay-Marquez who attended with her daughter Mary enthusiastically invited students to register for the Young Women’s Leadership Program. Learn of serving with that and with UN Generation Equality at https://sites.google.com/view/stories-truth-transformation/service-scholarship