Tuesday, March 17, 2009

10 Things to know about the Minnesota Women's Consortium

The Minnesota Elder Economic Security Initiative is a program by the Minnesota Women's Consortium (MWC). The mission of the MWC is to achieve equality and justice for all women and girls by connecting everyone who shares those goals.

Here are 10 other things to know about the MWC:

1) The Consortium is the largest women-supporting network in the U.S. We have 175 member organizations, 2,000 individuals and reach 10,000 people biweekly.

2) Consortium member groups are incredibly diverse in strategies and more. 30 groups work on health care issues, 15 are women's centers or women's studies programs on college campuses, 10 are in the music and arts, nine groups represent immigrants and women of color, seven groups focus on international issues, eight are church groups, 12 groups are outside of the Twin Cities, 11 are coalitions, three are big unions, 10 are statewide groups with multiple charters, and we have a professional football and basketball team, as well as the Minnesota State Patrol.

3) The Consortium co-owns and shares with many in the Minnesota Women's Building in St. Paul.

4) We put on eight events per year. This includes Celebration in January, Capitol events for presidents, girls and women, three membership meetings per year, the Feminist Film Festival for Women's Equality Week in August, and a semi-annual all-issues conference in the fall.

5) The Consortium staff of five rages in age 25 to 62.

6) We won the Women's Press Changemaker Award in 2007 and the Ann Bancroft Foundation Dream-Maker Award in 2008.

7) The Consortium is the only group in the country that traces its policy lineage back to the only government-funded U.S. women's meeting ever: Houston, Texas, in 1977. The Consortium was created in 1980 so we are almost 30 years old.

8) We have not lobbied in all that time, though we have been able to share the action alerts of our member groups. This will probably change in the next month!

9) Two special projects the Consortium is currently growing are the Latinas Association and MinnEESI.

10) We have been the catalyst for many special projects, new organizations, passing laws, and more -- but the most important thing is we are always open to new ideas and people.

By Marie Nelson

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