Indianapolis Oxfam Action Corps

Indianapolis Oxfam Action Corps
Working to Right the Wrongs of Poverty, Hunger, and Injustice


Thursday, June 25, 2015

It’s time for a change! We will no longer be posting on this city blog, but make sure to check out our National Blog where you can find anecdotes from your Oxfam Action Corps Organizers and dedicated volunteers. The National Blog will feature events from across the country, important action items and news from Oxfam America. We hope you will move with us!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Your Indianapolis Women

International Women’s Day 2015

Celebrate women, help fight poverty

Indianapolis Oxfam Action Corps wants to celebrate four powerful Indianapolis Women for International Women's day. It's safe to say these women are a lot more than a picture and blurb. That's why we invite you to meet them and hear more of their story and work.

When: March 11th, 2015 at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
(Yes, International Women's Day is on March 8th. We hope a larger crowd can join us on the 11th!)

Where: Yats Cajun Creole Restaurant
885 Massachusetts Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46202

Register here

Meet the women change-makers right here in Indianapolis!


Ms. Juliana Njoku Fashanu is the Founder and CEO of the IAMH20 Foundation, a 501c3 charity based in Indianapolis, IN.  Born in West Africa, Nigeria, Ms. Njoku Fashanu has lived with and witnessed firsthand the detrimental outcomes that have resulted from the consumption of “bad water.”  Ms. Njoku Fashanu has had extensive experience in international development and capacity building to include serving as a former Program Coordinator at the United Nations Development Programme, now known as UN WOMEN, in both the Peace and Security and HIV/AIDS division, respectively.

Ms. Njoku Fashanu leads the IAMH2O Foundation with a spirit of servant leadership.  IAMH2O is grounded in the belief that the right to access to clean water is a human right.  IAMH20 is committed to advocacy and projects that promote water for empowerment. Water is the pipeline to global advancement that when effectively utilized lead to sustainable development and the effective progression of poverty alleviation initiatives in emerging global communities. 


Valerie Khokhar is a graduate student of Applied Anthropology at IUPUI studying human trafficking. She received her Bachelor’s degree in International Studies with an area concentration on Australia-Asia from IUPUI. 

At IUPUI, Valerie studied abroad in Australia for one month studying Aboriginal Reconciliation and the Stolen Generation. Prior to IUPUI she attended The College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio. While a Wooster student, she studied abroad in Banaras, India for a year with the University of Wisconsin, Madison. In India, she studied language, researched leprosy, completed internship on sari weaving, and spent time with a cloth merchant to have more opportunity to engage with women. Valerie also resided in Karachi, Pakistan for 11 years where she worked at a computer business. 

She speaks Hindi and Urdu. Currently, Valerie coordinates the human trafficking initiative for INDYthinks. She is also a member of the Indiana Council on World Affairs. Valerie’s contact is 


Ms. Mishra strives for the betterment of Indian rural communities by working for gender equality and justice. She is passionate about creating means of economic empowerment for women in these rural communities.

Ms. Mishra seeks to reduce gender-based poverty by creating programs that focus on enhancing women’s collective impact in rural India. She plans to work with key stakeholders in government to create an effective system for implementation of her programs.
She is currently spending her year at the Lugar Series learning about sophisticated practices in increasing women’s equal access to public and private sector leadership positions.


Hannah Croucher is Membership Development Manager for the Girl Scouts of Central Indiana.

Hannah was part of the first cohort of students to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree offered by IUPUI’s School of Philanthropy. She is a member of the board of OBAT Helpers, and has visited to the Urdu-speakers’ camps in Bangladesh. She is a co-founder of Benga International, and is planning to launch programs in Jordan and elsewhere in the Middle East to provide international refugee education programs.

Hannah is an important part of the INDYthinks initiatives onIndy ⇔ Bangladesh and the Syrian refugee crisis, and coordinates press relations for INDYthinks.

Incredible Women, Cajun Food, Good Times

Indianapolis Oxfam Action Corps will celebrate International Women's Day at Yats on Mass!

When: March 11th, 2015 at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
(Yes, International Women's Day is on March 8th. We hope a larger crowd can join us on the 11th!)

You can register here. Or just show up! It's even okay if you're late!

Where: Yats Cajun Creole Restaurant
885 Massachusetts Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46202

We invite you to get a delicious cajun meal (we recommend the chile cheese étoufée, but we're not picky), meet local leaders in international advocacy and development, and take a moment to recognize the power of women around the world. 

Celebrate Women. Help Fight Poverty.

Brief History of International Women's Day

International Women’s Day 2015
Celebrate women, help fight poverty

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the economic, political, and social achievements of women past, present, and future.

A story about a conference in Copenhagen, a leader who didn’t keep his promise, and an International Women’s Day.

100 years ago, in 1910, a second International Conference of Working Women was held in Copenhagen. A school teacher and suffrage named Clara Zetkin proposed that every year in every country there should be a celebration on the same day – a Women’s Day – to press for their demands. The conference was made up of about 100 women from 17 countries, from political parties, working women’s clubs, legislators, Parlimentarians, and unions. They greeted this suggestion with unanimous approval and thus International Women’s Day was the result.

The very first International Women’s Day was launched the following year and took plan on the 19 March (yes, not 8 March). The date was chosen because on the 19th March in the year of the 1848 revolution, the Prussian king recognized for the first time the strength of the people and gave way because of promises not fulfilled. Among the many promises he made but had failed to keep, was the introduction of votes for women.

Plans for the first International Women’s Day demonstration were spread mainly by word of mouth. Success of the first International Women’s Day in 1911 exceeded all expectations. Meetings were organized everywhere and even the villages halls were packed so full that male workers were asked to give up their places for women. Men stayed at home with their children for a change, and their wives, usually the captive housewives, went to meetings. The largest street demonstration had 30,000 women. And we all know what came later between 1910 and 1920.

A couple of years after the first one, International Women’s Day was transferred to 8 March and this day has remained the global date for International Women’s Day ever since. During International Women’s Year in 1975, the day was given official recognition by the United Nations and was taken up by many governments. International Women’s Day is marked by a national holiday in some countries, such as China, Armenia, Russia, Bulgaria, and Vietnam. International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the economic, political, and social achievements of women past, present, and future.

What's all the hype about women?

International Women’s Day 2015
Celebrate women, help fight poverty

On the first International Women’s Day, more than a century ago, one million women and men in five countries took to the streets to rally for women’s economic, social, and political rights. Their efforts helped women secure the right to vote and make other important gains.

International Women’s Day—which falls every year on March 8—is still celebrated as an important holiday in many countries. It’s a time to honor everyday women for their accomplishments and salute the efforts of notable women around the world.

In the fight to end poverty, women are on the front lines.

The way we at Oxfam see it, poverty is solvable—a problem rooted in injustice. Eliminate injustice and you can eliminate poverty. We’re not saying it will be quick or easy, but it can be done.

And we can’t begin to tackle those problems without considering the vast inequities that exist between women and men—the access each gender has to education, to resources, and to political engagement. Women, on every score, fall far behind. Worldwide, they bear the brunt of poverty.

But when women can exercise their rights and gain the knowledge, skills, and information they need, they can become powerful agents of change. Consider these facts:

  • Worldwide in 2008, nearly 800 million people over the age of 15 could neither read nor write—and two-thirds of them were women. [1]
  • In most countries, women earn between 10 and 30 percent less than men.
  • As of July 2013, women worldwide made up fewer than 21 percent of national legislators.
  • During peace talks, women make up just 10 percent of negotiators at the table.
  • Of all credit offered in developing countries, only 10 percent of it is available to women, making it more difficult for them to start businesses or take out loans.
  • Among Fortune 500 companies, those with the most women in management jobs produced a total return for shareholders 34 percent higher than firms with the fewest women in management positions

Women also play an important part in our global food system, and supporting them can make huge strides in the fight against hunger.

  • Women make up an average of 43 percent of farmers and farm workers in the developing world.[2]
  • In developing countries, 79 percent of economically active women spend their working hours producing food through agriculture.[3]
  • An estimated 150 million people in 34 developing countries could escape hunger if women had the same access as men to the assets they need for farming.[4]

We at Oxfam believe that empowered women can change the world. Through our work in more than 90 countries, Oxfam helps women and girls overcome gender discrimination, realize their potential, and assume leadership roles in their communities. When you join us in celebrating International Women’s Day, you’re playing an important role in these efforts.

Inspiring stories about women around the world
How does Oxfam team up with women in more than 90 countries to fight poverty and injustice? Find the latest stories about our work here:

This ordinary woman stood up to a powerful mining company—and won. Learn how you can unleash your inner David and stand up to the Goliaths of the world at

[1] All facts on this list sourced from “Working with Women,” Oxfam America brochure, updated August 2014, available at Main sources include UN Women, UNESCO Institute for Statistics, The Advocates for Human Rights, the United Nations Statistics Division, and Oxfam. A list of complete sources is available by contacting
[2] Source: UN FAO, Women in Agriculture report, 2011  Note: This figure ranges from around 20 percent in Latin America to 50 percent in parts of Africa and Asia. The share is higher in some countries and is changing rapidly in some parts of the world.
[4] Source: “Working with Women” brochure, see previous page.