I am so very thrilled to be in SĢ£o Paulo today as we launch day one of our Global Ambassadors Program mentoring forum in Brazil. Seven extraordinary women leaders have traveled from the United States, Argentina and Mexico to spend this week mentoring a powerful and diverse group of emerging women leaders in Brazil involved in everything from international trade to journalism to advocacy through graffiti art.
The seven mentees met this morning as a group, without their mentors, to embark on a day-long series
of communications and media trainings focused on storytelling and media engagement strategies.
They were then treated to a briefing by our program partner, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, with remarks from Rena De Sisto, Global Arts & Culture and International CSR executive, on the genesis and progress of the program.
Vital Voices President and CEO Alyse Nelson also walked them through the Vital Voices Leadership Model for grounding in five core principles of women’s leadership that is a hallmark of our organization.
In a country where job opportunities are limited, the gender gap in Brazil is still evident and there is the double-burden of employment and women’s traditional responsibilities for family and childcare, it is exciting to know that this week will be transformational to both mentors and mentees as they navigate through discussion and the stretching of short, medium and long term visions and goals.
Tomorrow is the official start of the mentoring forum, when Global Ambassadors and their mentees meet for the first time. There will be one-on-one working sessions and an afternoon site visit to an artisan co-operative. We hope mentees will teach their mentors as they also learn from them, as this lifelong network of powerful mutual support takes root this week.
Along with structured mentoring time, Thursday will feature a stakeholder dialogue with members of the businesswomen’s community. On Friday, we’re bringing together a diverse array of women leaders from industries across South America for a public forum on women’s leadership, the power of mentoring and women as drivers of economic growth.
Watch the Global Ambassadors Program YouTube playlist to see our programs in action in Haiti, South Africa, India and Singapore.
Top: Mentees Vera Golik and Ana KĢĮtia Ferreira
Photography: David Hume Kennerly