Marga Fripp, the Founder of Empowered Women International, was a well-known journalist and social activist when she moved to the United States as an immigrant from Romania in 2001. She migrated to the United States for the treatment of her newborn baby after suffering a brain stroke. It was during this most stressful time in her life, that according to her, she re-explored herself and her purpose in life. She struggled to find her own way in the US, trying to integrate into the new social system, learning the language, caring for her baby and eight-year-old daughter, and with a husband whose work frequently took him out of the country. It was during this time when she realized that if she; an already empowered woman in her country can face such challenges, how about the other women who are going through all these with different backgrounds? Marga began to find other immigrant women struggling with the same situation of belonging and integration as an immigrant and refugees. Hearing their stories and similar plight, Marga created Empowered Women International, a volunteer-run program in 2002, which turned to be an award winning organization, benefitting over 3000 immigrant, refugees, and low-income women.
In her own words, Marga says; “My vision was to create a community of women for women, who can help one another succeed; a place where women support each other, and others can hear the stories these women tell.”
Empowered Women International unlocks the potential of women in the Greater DC Metro area facing economic and social challenges—including immigrants, refugees, and American-born women, providing them with the training and support they need to become economically mobile, financially stable and socially engaged. The approach is based on transforming creativity and passion into a meaningful cause and skill with the aim to; engage communities, empower women and grow economies.
Working with EWI for such a great cause gives me an immense pleasure and inner satisfaction, especially in my role, being close to analyzing the impact of the program and organization. Their stories witness the power of women for women and Marga’s envision.