FAQs

General Information

Sponsorship

Donations

How Can I Help?

My Account

Financial Information

Referrals

Tax Receipts

General Information

Contact Information
By email: general@womenforwomen.org
By phone: (202) 737-7705
By fax: (202) 737-7709
By mail:
Women for Women International
2000 M Street, NW
Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036

If you are already a supporter and have questions about your account please contact Supporter Services at (202) 521-0016 or 1(888) 504-3247 or choose one of the following email addresses:

For billing questions – finance@womenforwomen.org
For questions about your sponsorship – sponsorship@womenforwomen.org. The sponsor provides monthly financial support that provides direct financial aid, training and other services to women participants.
To send a letter to your sponsored sister, visit our Online Login Area.

Mission Statement
Women for Women International provides women survivors of war, civil strife and other conflicts with the tools and resources to move from crisis and poverty to stability and self-sufficiency, thereby promoting viable civil societies.

Vision Statement
Women for Women International envisions a world where no one is abused, poor, illiterate or marginalized; where members of communities have full and equal participation in the processes that ensure their health, well-being and economic independence; and where everyone has the freedom to define the scope of their life, their future and strive to achieve their full potential.

Our Core Values and Beliefs
Equality: All people are free and equal in dignity and rights: civil, political, social, economic and cultural.
Empowerment: The women who we assist are the leaders in their own lives. Tools are provided for each woman to rebuild her life.

Respect: The women we support choose their own value system. Options are presented to each woman but she is responsible for her own choice.

Diversity: Women are not simply refugees or victims of war but are survivors and individuals. No two women require the same support to heal, and no two societies can be rebuilt in the same way. Communication among women of varied backgrounds, national origins, race, and religion – both those who need assistance and those who offer it – must honor each other's differences.

Investment: The one-on-one approach deals with macro issues through micro solutions. By strengthening local chapters we attempt to build or strengthen civil society in the countries where we work.

In which countries does Women for Women International operate?
Women for Women International currently operates in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Sudan. Women for Women International also has worked in Bangladesh, Croatia and Pakistan.

Are women put at risk by participating in Women for Women International's programs?
In order to best serve our participants, Women for Women International works to ensure the safety of its overseas staff and its participants by closely monitoring security situations in the communities, regions and countries where it works on a day-to-day basis. Each office is staffed with its own security officer who helps evaluate the situation and can accompany staff into the field if necessary. The organization will work with participants to ensure they are able to safely participate in the program and will help them find resources to address any personal safety issues.

Before establishing our programs in a community, Women for Women International staff conducts outreach to local political, religious and civil society leaders to explain the benefits of the program. The organization also holds public meetings to answer questions any community member may have. This community outreach lets citizens know that Women for Women International will be invested in their community and will help the community as a whole. This cooperation is an important step in establishing safe, effective offices overseas.

How does Women for Women International decide where to expand its programs and services?
Women for Women International utilizes four criteria when determining how and when to expand its programs to new areas of operation. The organization seeks to work: 1) in conflict or post-conflict countries or regions; 2) where women are disproportionately affected by war and violence; 3) where these women's needs are not being met and the organization's programs can fill a critical gap in services; and 4) when the organization has the resources to launch and sustain a program that can grow and expand over time to meet the long-term needs of women survivors of war.

How effective are Women for Women International's programs?
Women for Women International's strategy promotes rights-based development by supporting women as they take control in rebuilding their lives and generating economic sustainability in their communities. Its multi-phase approach incorporates direct aid, emotional support, skills training, rights education, leadership training, microenterprise and small business development. Underlying all program activities is the idea that women will advance from victim to survivor to becoming active, self-assured members of their communities. With support from individuals like you, we were able to reach these notable achievements:

  • Linked more than 145,000 women survivors of war with sponsors worldwide.
  • Facilitated the translation and exchange of thousands of letters of support between sponsors and sponsored women.
  • Enrolled and graduated more than 93,000 women in the organization's Renewing Life Skills for Women (ReneWLS leadership and rights awareness education training program.
  • Helped thousands of women secure employment and establish their own income-generating businesses.
  • Distributed more than $78.8 million in direct aid and microcedit loans, maintaining a 99% repayment rate on all loans.
  • Facilitated hundreds of group therapy sessions for war survivors by providing a venue for women to share their experiences and feelings and build bridges between women survivors of different ethnic backgrounds.

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Sponsorship

What is sponsoring a sister and how does it work?
Women for Women International's Sponsorship Program is a direct and personal approach to supporting women survivors of war and conflict as they move from being victims to survivors to active citizens engaged in rebuilding their lives and communities. As a sponsor, you pledge to contribute a monthly fee to support one individual woman in our yearlong program of vocational and business skills training, rights awareness, and health education. Your support will provide the tools and resources your sister needs to rebuild her life. Your monthly contributions will also help your sister obtain basic necessities for her family, like food, clean water, and medicine; to pay school-related expenses for her children; to start building family savings; or to use the funds as seed capital to start a business. Perhaps more importantly, the emotional support that your sponsorship and letters provide serves as a lifeline to a woman who may have otherwise lost everything.

For more information about the Sponsorship Program please see the Sponsorship Community.

How does a sponsored sister benefit from $30 a month?
A sponsor's contribution of $30 a month provides a sponsored sister with business and vocational skills training, rights awareness, and health education in Women for Women International's yearlong program. Your support also provides direct financial assistance to your sister during the program so she can pay for basic necessities like food, medicine, and tuition fees for her children. To ensure all gifts entrusted to us have maximum impact, your sponsorship gift is combined with gifts from other sponsors, contributors, government and foundation grants, and goods donated by companies, to fund our work to benefit women, their families, and their communities With the knowledge, skills, and financial and emotional support women receive through WfWI's program, women create a stronger foundation from which to rebuild and transform their lives.

How does Women for Women International work with the community to plan and implement its training program for sponsored sisters?
Women for Women International believes that having strong relationships with the communities where we work is critically important to ensure our efforts have local buy-in and are most effective given the context we are operating in. Through consultations with community leaders, we are better able to identify and connect with women who could benefit from our programs. Many of the communities where we work have also generously donated land or spaces for us to use to conduct trainings.

How does sponsorship improve the lives of women, their families, and communities?
There are countless positive effects that sponsorship has on individual women, their families, and their communities. Among our indicators, graduates from our program report an average daily income of $1.47 at graduation, compared to $0.30 at enrollment. As women gain skills, knowledge, and access to resources through our program, they are not only able to take better care of themselves, but their families as well. Women often use their newfound confidence to become agents of change and leaders in their communities, helping other women and community members benefit from what they learned.

In 2012, Women for Women International's partners Bloomberg Philanthropies and NoVo Foundation commissioned KPMG to review our programs in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The review found that our program "is having a significant economic ripple [effect] as other women in the community are learning from WfWI graduates who are now viewed as role models in the community." To learn more about how our programs can positively affect the broader community, please click here.

Is there a maximum or minimum timeframe in which Women for Women International will commit to work in a community?
Women for Women International does not set a timeframe for our work in a community. Each community we serve has different needs and varying numbers of women who may benefit from the programs we offer. We strive to continue to work in a community as long as there are women there who are able and want to participate in our programs.

Do sponsored sisters receive more help than other women living in the same community?
Sponsored sisters are able to participate in our yearlong training program and receive vocational and business skills training, rights awareness, health education, and additional emotional and social support. Participants and graduates of our program often seek to share what they learned with friends and neighbors who have not completed our program. From starting businesses that employ women to teaching other women about their rights, our program graduates take the knowledge and skills they gain during the yearlong program to benefit other women and their community as a whole.

Why does Women for Women International have a sponsorship program in some countries and not in others?
Women for Women International currently works in eight conflict and post-conflict countries around the world, including Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda, and South Sudan. We currently match sponsors to program participants in each of these countries.

How are women selected for sponsorship?
When Women for Women International enrolls women in our yearlong program, we seek to identify those in the community who are among the most vulnerable and marginalized, and therefore stand to benefit the most from the trainings. All of the women experience extreme economic hardship, with an average daily income of just $0.30. Nearly half have never had any formal education. For many, their status as a widow or single head of household puts additional burdens on them to care for their families. Experiences of conflict-related violence, domestic abuse, and sexual violence are common.

At enrollment sessions, WfWI staff members discuss the unique challenges and needs of each woman seeking to enroll. Those who are enrolled at a given enrollment session are placed into classes of 20 to 25 women who go through the yearlong training program together.

Can I pick which country I want to sponsor in?
We no longer offer 'country preferences' as an option, as not all of our country offices enroll participants on a rolling basis. In order for our country offices to maintain maximum flexibility, each enrolls participants at different periods throughout the year.

How long will I be able to sponsor a sister?
You will be able to sponsor your sister for 12 months as she completes Women for Women International's yearlong training program. In every country where Women for Women International operates, the demand for our program exceeds capacity, and more sponsors are needed to meet the demand. The majority of our sponsors choose to continue their sponsorship and be matched with a new sister annually.

How often will I receive a progress report on my sponsored sister?
Shortly after your sister's enrollment in the yearlong program, you will receive information regarding your sister's name, country of residence, age, and the number of children she has. You may also receive a photograph of your sister if one is available.

As your sister participates in our yearlong program, you will receive regular updates about which of the four program modules your sister is in and what she will learn during that module. You will receive a final update at the time of your sister's graduation from the program that shows what she learned during the year, the vocational track she trained in, and her overall satisfaction with the program.

Of course one of best ways to keep in touch with your sister to learn of her individual progress is to write to her! For more information about sending letters to your sister, please click here.

Are all sponsored sisters survivors of war?
Women for Women International works in conflict and post-conflict countries, where violence has directly or indirectly touched the lives of every community and person. Experiences of conflict-related violence, domestic abuse, and sexual violence are common, and while each woman who participates in our program may not have personally witnessed or been physically injured by the conflict, the effects of such societal violence and upheaval are numerous, widespread, and long lasting.

Why is there sometimes conflicting information provided about a sponsored sister?
Sometimes sponsors do receive seemingly conflicting information about a sponsored sister, which may be due to letter translation issues, technical difficulties, etc. If you receive conflicting information about your sister, please contact our Customer Service teamand they can best assist you with your individual questions.
If you ever receive concerning or alarming information in a letter from your sister, please contact our Customer Service team so we can ensure your sister is receiving the support she needs.

How do I write to my sister?
You can send letters to your sister online or through the post. To minimize administrative expenses of shipping costs, we prefer that you use our Online Login Area to send an email and upload photos, which are then printed at the country office and delivered to your sister.

Paper letters can be mailed to us at:

Women for Women International
2000 M Street, NW, Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036

In all paper letters, please be sure to include: 
Your full name
Your sponsor ID number
Your sister's full name
Your sister's woman group
Your sister's country

Why does it take so long to receive a letter from my sister?
On average, it takes three months for your letters to reach your sister and for her letters to reach you. After you send your letters to our office in Washington, D.C., we forward them to our offices overseas once a month. Letters submitted via our Online Login Area are sent to our offices overseas once a week. Your letters are then translated by staff members in our field offices and given to your sister. If your sister is not literate, the letters will be read to her, and she can dictate a letter to you. Your sister's letters to you will be translated, sent to our office in Washington, DC, and then mailed to you.

In some cases, your sister may choose not to write. The women in our programs face multiple hardships that may not allow them the time or energy to write you. We encourage you to please continue to write to your sister, as your letters of support do help.

Why haven't I received a letter from my sister?
In some cases, your sponsored sister may choose not to write. The women in our program often face multiple hardships that may not allow them the time or energy to write to you. Please do not let this discourage you or prevent you from continuing to write to your sister. Your letters do help, and even if you are not receiving letters, your sponsored sister receives your letters and contributions, which our representatives deliver every month.

In what other ways can I communicate with my sister?
Besides handwritten letters, the easiest way to send letters is through our Online Login Area. After logging in, your sister's information will be automatically filled in for you. You can attach photos, write captions, and even save draft letters to come back to later. Get started here!

Why doesn't Women for Women International give my sister my entire monthly gift?
Your sister receives the full benefit of your monthly contribution, which covers the costs of her participation in our yearlong training program as well as her monthly training stipend. Your support goes directly to ensuring your sister has the knowledge, skills, and resources she needs to transform her life.

Can I send money directly to my sister?
We ask that sponsors do not send additional money or gifts to their sisters. It is important that each woman going through the program receives the same training and financial benefits so that no woman feels she has been given any less support than her fellow participants.

May I send a package to my sister?
We ask that sponsors only send cards or letters of support to their sisters. We cannot facilitate the sending of larger packages due to customs duties and high costs of overseas shipping. Any packages received by Women for Women International will be returned to you.

Can I send other types of gifts?
We understand that many sponsors want to share more than just sponsorship funds and letters with their sisters. However, due to the customs duties and high costs of overseas shipping, there is a limit to what you can send your sister. Flat paper items such as photos, greeting cards, stationery, and stickers may be sent in small quantities with your letters.

May I visit my sister?
Currently, Women for Women International has limited opportunities for groups of sponsors to visit their sisters in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Rwanda. At this time, we are unable to organize visits to other countries, due to security concerns and logistical limitations.

If you are interested in learning more about opportunities to visit your sister in Rwanda or Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as associated costs, please contact our contact our Customer Service team. If you are visiting the country where your sister lives and would like to inquire about the possibility of meeting your sister, please contact our contact our Customer Service team.

Can my sister visit me?
Women for Women International does not coordinate or facilitate visits of sponsored sisters to their sponsors.

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Donations

How do I make a donation?
Your contribution will help Women for Women International continue its life-saving work with women survivors of conflict around the world. Send your donation to: Women for Women International, Global Support Center, PO Box 9224, Central Islip, NY 11722-9224. Or make an online donation today!

How are my contributions spent?
We are committed to ensuring that every woman we work with receives the most from your contributions. For more information on Women for Women International's financial information, please click here.

Are contributions to Women for Women International tax-deductible?
Contributions made to Women for Women International are tax-deductible in the United States. Women for Women International's U.S. tax Identification number is: 52-1838756. All sponsors will receive a tax receipt for the current year's total donations in the beginning of the following year.

Can I contribute through the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC)?
Yes, federal employees can designate Women for Women International as a charity for your workplace campaign through the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). Our CFC number is #11311. This number may vary for state campaigns and you can find our local state campaign number through your workplace's CFC guide

Do you accept employer matching gifts?
Women for Women International does accept employer matching gifts and encourages you to increase your donation by taking advantage of your company's matching gift program. To find out if your company has a matching gift policy, contact your Human Resources department or click here to access this online resource of companies with matching gift programs. Matching gifts cannot be applied to your sponsorship but will be used to strengthen and expand programs in the field.

Do you accept gifts of stock?
Women for Women International can also accept gifts of stock and cash wire transfers. Instructions for transferring stock and securities are provided below. Donor information included in electronic transfers is often incomplete. So please alert us in advance by providing the stock name, symbol and number of shares you plan to donate, so that we can ensure that you receive a tax receipt and acknowledgement. You may contact us by email at majorgifts@womenforwomen.org or by mail at:

Women for Women International
Attn: Office of Major Gifts
2000 M Street, NW, Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036

Stock Transfer

If the securities are held in "street name" at your brokerage firm, you may instruct your broker to have them transferred to us directly.

Account Name: Women for Women International
J.P. Morgan
DTC: 0902
ACCT: P72500
Sub Acct: PBD#M45828007

ACH/Wire Instruction for Cash Transfers

If you plan to transfer cash by wire or ACH, you may instruct your financial institution to use the following transfer instructions.

Account Name: Women for Women International
Bank: Wells Fargo
Routing Number: 121000248
ACN: 2000020771537
Swift: WFWBIUS65

How is Women for Women International funded?
Women for Women International is primarily funded by individual contributions, including donors and sponsors. In addition, WfWI receives support from foundations, multilateral and corporate contributions, government grants, and pro bono services.

For further information about Women for Women International's financial statements, please click here.

Are Women for Women International's fundraising efforts in compliance with established fundraising guidelines?
Women for Women International is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and abides by the legal fundraising requirements and guidelines established for 501(c)(3) organizations.

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How Can I Help?

Sponsorship
The Sponsorship Program links women in the US with women in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Sudan, who have survived war and conflict. Individual sponsorships are a direct, personal, hands-on way for women in the US and elsewhere to help marginalized women in post-conflict countries. The sponsor provides monthly financial support that provides direct financial aid, training and other services to women participants. In addition, the sponsor and the woman exchange letters. For a woman who may have lost everything or who feels isolated from the world, letters of support and encouragement help renew her hope for a better future. For more information on how to sponsor today, click here.

Donations
Your contribution will help Women for Women International continue its life-saving work with women survivors of violence around the world. Send your donation to: Women for Women International PO Box 9224, Central Islip, NY 11722. Or, contribute online today or call (202) 521-0161 or 1 (888) 504-3247!

Volunteer
As a non-profit organization, Women for Women International depends upon volunteer efforts to make our programs a success and to allow us to direct more money to program participants.

Women for Women International works with general office volunteers at our Washington, DC headquarters office. If you live in the metro-DC area and are interested in helping out in our offices, please click here to learn more

If you live outside of the metro-DC area, please visit our Get Involved page to learn about how you can get involved, by hosting an event or spreading the word!

We have recently restructured our overseas volunteer program so that only persons already staying in the host country are eligible to participate. For those already in the host country, we will provide contact information for our local office, and you may arrange the details with the local staff. We regret that we are unable to provide more comprehensive opportunities at this time.

If you are fluent in Bosnian, Albanian, Farsi or Arabic and would like to volunteer your translation services to help sponsors communicate with their sisters after they have completed our program, please send an email with your resume and qualifications.

Other Ways You Can Help
Click here for general information on Hosting an Event!

  • Refer us to people who would benefit from our newsletters and mailings.
  • Distribute brochures about Women for Women International in your local community.
  • Organize a fundraiser and make Women for Women International the beneficiary. For fundraiser ideas, please see the "Make a Difference Today" section of our website.
  • Host an information session in your home: we will provide materials.
  • Make a gift to our general program fund in honor of a friend's or relative's birthday or wedding anniversary, or to mark a religious holiday.
  • If you are a member or alumna of an organization or attend a school that publishes a newsletter or regular bulletin, ask about including a prepared piece on Women for Women International or women survivors of violence.
  • Educate others about the trials that women face worldwide.
  • Find out if your employer will match contributions or ask your employer about setting up a matching gift program.
  • Be creative at the office. Some employers will let employees trade a personal or vacation day for a charitable donation.
  • Designate Women for Women International as a beneficiary if your employer participates in a work-place giving program such as the United Way or Combined Federal Campaign.

To receive Women for Women International materials, please send an email or contact us at (202) 521-0016. For more fundraising ideas, see the Get Involved section of our website.

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My Account

Why has my credit card been charged or why have I received a monthly commitment statement, but haven't received information about my new sister?
Between the 5th and 10th days of the month we match all new sponsors with their sisters and charge their credit cards or send out statements, accordingly. Because we more than doubled our sponsorship base in January 2005, it takes approximately a month to generate the letters with your sister's biographical information. If you notice that your credit card has been charged by Women for Women International, or if you receive a statement from us, please count on receiving your new sponsor packet—complete with a letter about your sister, a sponsorship handbook, and information about your sister's country—before the end of that same month. If you should not receive this information, please contact us at sponsorship@womenforwomen.org or (202) 521-0016 or 1 (888) 504-3247.

Why do I keep receiving statements when I have paid in advance?
All sponsors who pay by check will receive a monthly statement whether they have paid in advance or not. Your statement will indicate if a contribution is due, as well as the due date.

I sent in a payment that's not reflected on my statement. Do I owe money?
Payments received after the first of the month may not appear on your current statement. You can simply subtract that amount from your total due.

How do I change my credit card information?
You can easily change all of your billing information, including credit card number, address, and phone numbers by logging into the Supporter’s Portal and clicking on “My Account.” You can also update your account information by calling our Customer Service department at (202) 521-0016 or 1(888) 504-3247. You also can print and mail this form.

Can I see my account information online?
You can view your contribution history and securely update your payment information for any ongoing donations by logging into the Supporter’s Portal. Once you’re logged in, click on “My Account.” To view your recent contributions, simply click on “Payment History,” and to update your payment information, click on “Payment Options.”

I pay by credit card. Will I receive a statement?
In order to direct the most funds to women in need, Women for Women International does not send a commitment statement to each sponsor who pays automatically via credit card each month. You will be notified by email each month when your card has been charged, or if we are having difficulty applying payments to your account. If you pay by credit card, but do not have a valid email address, you will receive a commitment statement in the mail. To stop payments to your credit card please contact us at finance@womenforwomen.org or (202) 521-0016 or 1 (888) 504-3247.

How do I switch to making payments by credit card?
If you would like to start making payments by credit card, you can easily add a credit card to your account by logging into the Supporter’s Portal and clicking on “My Account” and then “Payment Options.”  You can also fill out the credit card information on the top third of the mailed billing statements. Still have questions? Please call us at (202) 521-0016 or 1 (888)504-3247 or email finance@womenforwomen.org.  Note: Please do not email your payment information.

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Financial Information

How much of the money I donate goes to the women in the program?
We are committed to ensuring that every woman we work with receives the most from your contributions. For more information on Women for Women International's financial information, please see our Annual Report.

If you are a sponsor, you will be asked to provide a direct monthly contribution to Women for Women International in the amount specified upon your enrollment. It is also possible to make this contribution in annual or semi-annual lump payments, an option that reduces processing fees so that more funds can be sent directly to your sister's program.
If you wish to update your billing plan, simply send an email to finance@womenforwomen.org or call 202-521-0016.

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Referrals

Where can I find help for victims of violence in the U.S.?
If you are a survivor of violence, or know someone who is, and you live in the United States, you can contact:
National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233
National Victim Center 800-FYI-CALL (394-2255)
Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) 1-800-656-HOPE

Research
For information about global gender and women's issues visit the News from the Front section of our website.

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Tax Receipts

How do I get a tax receipt for my donations?
To access information about your account, including your 2013 Donation Summary to use for tax purposes please follow visit our Supporter’s Portal. You will be able to view it as many times as you would like. In addition to being convenient for you – this will save paper, postage, and resources – and will allow us to use more money directly for our programs and the women we support. In the coming months we will add more information to help you manage your sponsorship and donations more easily.

I am having problems registering on the Supporter Login Features. What should I do?
If you are having problems registering or using the Supporter’s Portal, please send an email to onlinesupport@womenforwomen.org or call 1(888) 504-3247 or (202) 521-0016. Please include the nature of the problem and we will respond to you as soon as possible.

What if I still want to receive a tax receipt by mail?
Please consider using our Supporter’s Portal. It is convenient for you and will save paper, postage, resources and will allow us to use more money directly for our programs and the women we support.
To request a receipt be sent by mail, please email a request to taxreceipt@womenforwomen.org.