Melanie and Joan created a quilt that was accepted for the "Solar Sister" project sponsored by Quilt for Change.
Solar Sister: Empowering Women through Clean Energy.” “Solar Sister” will go on display at the United Nation’s European headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, the Palais des Nations, starting Thursday, June 27, and running through most of July.
Quilt for Change raises awareness on global issues that affect women and empowers North American quilters to become agents for social change. Working with the and partner organizations we create themed quilt challenge exhibitions which are displayed at the United Nations and tour major quilt festivals in the United States. The exhibitions are a forum for fiber artists not only from the U.S. and Canada but also around the world.
Solar Sister highlights the terrific work of Rhode Island-based non-profit Solar Sister, which started out working in Uganda and now is in five other countries in Africa (Rwanda, South Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, and Nigeria). Solar Sister provides the funding and a business-in-a-box model to outfit Solar Sister Entrepreneurs to sell solar-based products in their communities. Solar Sisters re-pay their micro-loans and re-stock their inventories using the proceeds of sales to their friends and neighbors, and Solar Sister reinvests the original funds (obtained through donations and grants from individuals, companies and foundations) in new Entrepreneurs in order to grow a network of empowered small businesswomen. The products sold are all solar-based and designed to provide light and power to improve daily life and productivity. Using Solar Sister products, a family can now cook meals in a more efficient and cleaner way, cutting down on indoor air pollution and associated health problems; children can study at night and achieve more at school; mothers can limit the time they spend away from home seeking firewood or walking to a facility with electricity so that they can work; and families can be in phone contact with neighbors, family and the outside world.