Rita Chajil with Genelle and Graciela
Rita Chajil is a teacher and social worker in San Lucas Tolimán, Guatemala. She is director of the San Lucas Tolimán Scholars Program and administers scholarships for over 250 local high school students. Lcda. Rita has worked with the GRACE Project and Femina Global since 2007, teaching Reproductive Health and educational methodologies.
Lauren McCraney, with Lcda. Rita Chajil, and Lieke Moras of the Midwife Project Guatemala
Lauren McCraney is a founding board member and VP of Femina Global. A resourceful visionary with experience in start-up and local community non-profit and for-profit endeavors. A lifelong advocate for social issues, she is the founder of Woven Women Collective, a global social enterprise devoted to supporting women through the preservation of traditional artisanal weavings. She combines her passion for equity and empowerment of women and girls with preservation of cultural diversity. Lauren has traveled the world studying and supporting issues that impact women. Actively engaged in global community leadership she has served on several committees dedicated to championing children’s health and literacy, equity and empowerment of women, reproductive rights, human trafficking prevention, homelessness, mental health and wellbeing. Lauren’s expertise is in building holistic collaborative relationships with community-based and global entities to promote awareness, advance common goals, and bring about social change.
After retiring from thirty years of public school teaching, I moved to North Fort Myers, FL and soon met Dr. Genelle Grant. I volunteered to be her treasurer of the GRACE Project. When Genelle formed her new non-profit: Femina Global, Inc, I was honored to be invited to be a founding Board member serving as Treasurer. I am a native of Atlanta, GA and received my Bachelor's and Educational Specialist degrees from GA State University and my Master's degree from the University of GA. I admire the efforts that Dr. Grant has worked with women and children in SWFL as well as in Guatemala.
Genelle G. Grant, Ed.D. is Founder and President of Femina Global, Inc. Since 1993, Genelle has worked with Maya and Latina women in Southwest Florida. She guided therapy groups (in Spanish) for survivors of human trafficking and domestic violence. Since 2005 she has traveled frequentlyto Guatemala to collaborate in workshops on teaching methodologies and reproductive health with the Guatemala Ministry of Education, women’s cooperatives, indigenous rights organizations, and in the vocational college led by Nobel Laureate Dr. Rigoberta Menchu Tum.
Genelle has taught in Puerto Rico, Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, New Hampshire, Boston, and Florida. She is the U.S. and Central American Coordinator for the India-based Maasika Mahatsov or global Period Festival. Dr. Grant’s areas of expertise are: reproductive and health education, community organizing, TV and radio production, community mural painting, and educational methods and materials development.
Shelley Graff, is a longtime teacher/healer/singer/songwriter who believes her sacred journey is guiding her to share the Singing In Sacred Circle experience with other womyn. Shelley has shared the Singing In Sacred Circle experience with womyn while traveling around the country and beyond attending festivals and doing workshops. Whether she is helping womyn start a singing circle in their hometown or doing workshops for established singing circles, Shelley loves singing with womyn and building song communities. Shelley is a Founding Mother and lead producer of SingFest which is a yearly gathering for womyn who want to celebrate the Feminine Divine through singing, drumming, poetry, art, dancing…SingFest is an event held in person in St. Petersburg, Florida as well as virtually on Zoom at the end of January each year. Shelley’s CDs, Moon Mama, Fire On The Arrow, Coming Home and For All the Womyn were inspired by and are a tribute to the healing/sounding singing circle work of the late Kay Gardner. For additional information about Shelley's journey or work, please visit www.shelleyg.com Contact: email@example.com CDs & Downloads available: www.goldenrod.com
Graciela is an eyom or midwife and a Maya Keeper of Time. She provides Mayan therapy and is a community leader in Totonicapán and Quiché, Guatemala. Graciela has traveled to Nepal, Dubai, Spain, Costa Rica, Bolivia, and Mexico, promoting health and natural HIV treatments. She works for the healing of body, Earth, and territory.
Doña Graciela uses the important elements: fire, water, air, and earth through healing plants, seeds, stones, bark, and incense. She is in the directory of a book on Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and is a legal representative of the KAWOQ Association of Midwives.
Lucy Garcia was born in Mexico, raised her family in Chicago, and moved to Lee County in Florida in 2002. She worked as an ESL Paraprofessional, Special-Ed Teacher Assistant in the Lee County System, and as a Spanish Teacher in the US Charter Schools. Lucy was a Life Skills Counselor with Southwest Florida Addiction Services in the for women coming out of jail and provided Court Mandated Domestic Violence Counseling for Spanish speaking Lee residents. In 2014 Lucy founded OILE; a Non-Profit 501-C3 Social Services Organization for the Latino and Migrant population. In 2016 Lucy graduated with a Master’s degree in Social Work. In 2022 OILE/Healing Stitches became a United Way House serving the Latino population, or anyone who requires assistance from a Social Service Agency.
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