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In the News: Panhellenic Council Raises $20,000 to Promote Women’s Health and Education in Ethiopia and Guatemala

Funds Raised by The University of Tennessee, Knoxville Panhellenic Council Support Two Organizations: Dignity Period and The Cooperative for Education

From The Circle of Sisterhood, Belmont, NC The Circle of Sisterhood Foundation (CofS), an organization founded and powered by sorority women to remove barriers to education for women worldwide, today announced that its campus partner, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville Panhellenic Council, has raised $20,000 to fund grants supporting two organizations, Dignity Period and The Cooperative for Education, promoting women’s health and education.

Anne Darty, vice president of philanthropy and community service, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Panhellenic Council.

Anne Darty, vice president of philanthropy and community service, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Panhellenic Council.

“Our community felt so strongly connected to these organizations and how they reach girls and women in different parts of the globe,” said Anne Darty, vice president of philanthropy and community service, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Panhellenic Council. “We are proud to be part of The Circle of Sisterhood and its mission to remove barriers to education for females worldwide.”

The first grant will benefit the Dignity Period, an organization that helps Ethiopian girls stay in school by providing the supplies and education they need to manage menstruation.

Specifically, the grant will enable the distribution of reusable, washable menstrual hygiene kits to girls, increasing school attendance by 24 percent. This grant will also provide menstrual educational materials to 50,000 boys and girls to break down misconceptions and cultural myths that lead to gender-based societal restrictions.

“Dignity Period is incredibly thankful for the ongoing support from The Circle of Sisterhood; a partnership that has directly impacted the lives of more than 6,000 Ethiopian girls by providing supplies and education around menstruation, reducing the stigma associated with periods,” said Angie Wiseman, executive director, Dignity Period. “Because of partnerships like this, we are able to help girls continue their studies without fear of accident or shaming. We want girls to reach their full potential because periods should end a sentence, not an education.”

The second grant will support The Cooperative for Education, helping Guatemalan schoolchildren break the cycle of poverty through education. These funds will contribute directly to the launch of a new youth development program curriculum that will empower more than 500 indigenous and impoverished girls to successfully pursue high school graduation, arming them with the tools and personal development skills they need to take on the future.

“In rural Guatemala, where impoverished families prioritize educating their sons, girls grow up feeling like second-class citizens. Thanks to The Circle of Sisterhood, 537 girls in Guatemala will receive an equal opportunity to both enroll and excel in school through CoEd’s Rise Youth Development Program,” said Ann Dempsey, CFRE, director of philanthropy, Cooperative for Education. “This grant, which helped print take-home manuals for the program’s new youth development curriculum, has even ensured that students can keep learning from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

To learn more about CofS, our mission, and the organizations we support, visit

August 19, 2020