The Asian University for Women (AUW) Support Foundation, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has launched a global crowdfunding campaign, #ProgressStartsWithEducation. The campaign seeks to raise US $150,000, an amount which will allow 10 women to continue their education at the liberal arts university in Chittagong, Bangladesh, for one year. The campaign was launched on International Women's Day and is inspired by the worldwide theme and call to action #PressForProgress.
"The developing world is faced with such a wide array of challenges, and trying to solve them individually often times only provides temporary relief," explained Kamal Ahmad, AUW Co-founder. "In order to address the problems facing these nations from the ground up, education has to be the starting point. Meaningful, sustainable progress can be achieved when you empower young women to become leaders in their societies."
The anchor of the campaign is a two-minute video featuring current students whom the donation dollars will directly benefit, and their personal commitments to achieve progress in their hometowns. Hailing from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal, the students in the video provide an international perspective on the condition of women around the world and look at how incremental progress can be truly monumental in developing nations where AUW draws students from.
AUW has received donations and support from several corporate partners , including Point72, Hong Kong Stock Exchange, MetLife and Fiat. Along with pledging US$60,000 to support a full-ride scholarship, Point72 also partnered with AUW to produce the campaign's anchor video, which is featured on its website along with information about its ongoing commitment to the university.
"Since we first partnered with AUW in 2016, we continue to be impressed and inspired by their mission and commitment to using education to combat systemic gender inequality in Asia and the Middle East," said Marc Desmidt, CEO of Point72's International business. "We are proud to support AUW because we agree that progress and diversity - of thought, of gender and of upbringing - go hand in hand."
Supporters are asked to visit www.crowdrise.com/auw-iwd to easily make a donation, learn more about the AUW students in need and watch the campaign video. They are also encouraged to follow the AUW Support Foundation Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates and spread the word using the hashtag #ProgressStartsWithEducation.
Founded in 2008 and located in Chittagong, Bangladesh, Asian University for Women is the first of its kind: a regional institution dedicated to women's education and leadership development - international in outlook but rooted in the contexts and aspirations of the people of Asia. Students from 15 countries attend AUW.