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Hopeful not Homeless

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on February 13, 2011

By PWG Member Jana Gamble

Today @S.I.S. Mentors partnered with the @Midwest Professional Women’s Group and had an amazing trip to Hopeville!! We spent an hour with the Mayor and the residents of Hopeville touring, talking, engaging, and encouraging!! Through our trip we uncovered the truths about the rumors and myths about this group of 45 “homeless” people. We’ve got it wrong folks- they ARE at home! Many of them are there by choice and do not want to leave. You can learn a lot by walking an hour in their shoes. There are 45 residents, only 7 of which are women and the Mayor is a Woman!! How cool is that! The youngest person is about 21 and the oldest is 62. Some of them have flame retardant homes, pets, spouses, families in the St. Louis area, they are skilled, talented, friendly and caring individuals. Several of them stated that this is the first time they have ever had their own home!

When we pulled up a couple of us in the car started to cry. When we left we left changed! We drove away with smiles on our faces and we grateful to make some new friends. This was a life changing experience for my family, my S.I.S. girls and my PWG sisters! We’re so grateful for this opportunity! ❤

Hopeville is in need of many items you may not think of such as: Men’s clothing, batteries (lots of them and all sizes for flashlights, etc.), socks, gloves, propane tanks, blankets, building supplies, phone cards (minute cards) and of course toiletries.

Today make an impact on our community! Show someone that there is Hope and that our community cares today!
Jana Gamble, is a Midwest Professional Women’s Group Member. She is the author of three books, I am a child of God, 107 ways to Give When You Think You Have Nothing to Give and Capture your Giving and Blessing, A Journaling  Journey to new discovery. Gamble writes a column in the monthly Connections Newsletter entitled “Inspirations from an Everyday Woman.”

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“WINTER DRIVE”

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on January 24, 2011

‘PLEASE HELP’

DRESS FOR SUCCESS MIDWEST

THE PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S GROUP

“WINTER DRIVE”

We need YOU, OUR COMMUNITY

HELP

THE HOMELESS WOMEN

IN

THE

METRO

ST. LOUIS AREA

We are collecting , bottle water, converter box, halls cough drops, aspirins, hoodies, candles, sleeping bags,  blankets,hats, shoes, firewood and propane gas, socks, gloves toilet tissue, personal hygiene items (toothpaste, small mouthwash, mints, gum, floss, lip balm, lipstick, lip gloss, female hygiene products, comb/brush, deodorant, powder, soap, body wash,

lotion, shampoo, conditioner, sanitizer wipes) to be distributed to local area homeless women

Please drop off donations at  1701 N. Second Street, St. Charles MO 63301, between 9am -4pm. Thank You

If you are interested in a sponsorship opportunity with our

‘COMMUNITY ACTION PROJECT’

Email us at

pwgcap2011@gmail.com

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Dress for Success Midwest Community Action Project Update

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on January 23, 2011

“ Yes We Can! Women Overcoming Obstacles”

Dress for Success Midwest Professional women’s group voted to have an project that focused on empowering women. We felt that being a part of Dress for Success Midwest has given us tools to empower ourselves and we wanted to share that with other women. We are utilizing our Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women’s Group blog to encourage women to use technology to get information that would be helpful in them overcoming their obstacles. We created the blog and social networking accounts ( twitter and facebook) to provide women with information about career advice, personal finance, women’s health and community resources.

In addition to our online efforts we are providing homeless women and their families information about resources and feeding them.Our project goal is to support women who are re-entering society from incarceration, homeless women, and women living in poverty. We want to equip women with information about community resources and approaches to overcome obstacles may be holding them back.

For the conclusion of our project we plan to hold a one day conference for homeless women on March 12 and women re entering society from prison by and provide information and resource on the areas of employment, personal finances and women’s health.

Our theme this year is “Yes We Can! Women Overcoming Obstacles.” The women in our membership have over come obstacles. Several members have experienced being homeless. This has caused them to be interested in giving back to the community through helping the homeless.

Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women’s Group (PWG) has formed a partnerships with First Steps Back Home, Makeover for Life Outreach, and Opal’s House to assist women with workshops job preparation and readiness. We are reaching out to our community global to provide information about personal finances and women’s health. We are have contributors who have shared blog post on career advice, personal finances, and women’s health Locally we are developing relationships with university, ministries and non project organizations who work with the homeless.

We kicked off our community action project by feeding, providing gift bags and resource information to homeless women and their families.

Our progress we have given bags of personal hygiene items to 40 women and we have feed homeless women and their families three meals.

Ly Syin Lobster
Dress for Success Midwest Community Action Project Leader
http://www.pwg2011.wordpress
twitter @stlpwg

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She is my Inspiration

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on October 22, 2010

She’s my inspiration but she’ll never even know it- you see I’ve never personally met her, but watching her, knowing her drive and struggles she faces causes me to face those- then seeming insignificant challenges in my hard dealt life.

You see it’s not so hard any more when I look at all she faces, ya see it’s not such a bad hand I’ve been given when I see the cards that she’s layed down. It’s more about how you play your cards anyway and not just about what you’re dealt.

She’s my inspiration

I come home and kick off my heels and complain about how it seems like there should be less mess and how I’m tired of this ol’ dishwasher because it never gets my dishes clean.

She kicks her heels up on a park bench and pries her tattered shoes off her severely blistered heels until an officer tells her she can’t be here because this is private property. She gets back up and walks around hoping to find somewhere safe and warm to sleep tonight.

She is my inspiration

She is my inspiration because she finally got the courage to leave him. Even though he had withdrawn all her money and told her she wouldn’t make it on her own.

She is my inspiration because she doesn’t walk alone but with a set of size 12 little girls shoes that she makes sure get to the school every day and on time.

She is my inspiration because she won’t let anything stand in her way from showing her baby girl that her God will protect them and make a way out of no way for them.

She is my inspiration because she took a coupon from a stranger she met at the soup kitchen and found herself standing in front of Dress for Success.

She is my inspiration because she took that coupon from a stranger, that gave her a suit, that landed her a job, that gave her the income that enabled her to get her own home, that gave her a place to park her new car, that gave her and her baby girl hope to move on.

She is my inspiration!

She was homeless by choice. My inspiration by divination!

She is my inspiration!

 

Jana Gamble, is a Midwest Professional Women’s Group Member. She is the author of three books, I am a child of God, 107 ways to Give When You Think You Have Nothing to Give and Capture your Giving and Blessing, A Journaling  Journey to new discovery. Gamble writes a column in the monthly Connections Newsletter entitled “Inspirations from an Everyday Woman.”

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Her Startup and Connections to Success partner to advise prospective businessowners

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on October 17, 2010

Khrystina Vaughan, founder of Her Startup, is dedicated to helping women launch, grow and give back through business. She is aware of the issues facing women worldwide as they struggle to provide for themselves and their families.

That is why she established a partnership with Connections to Success. Through their partnership, seven women recently were able to attend 90 Days to Launch, a 12-week intensive program that took female entrepreneurs from the planning stage to daily business operations.

The 90 Days to Launch program featured four guest speakers. Steve Balsarotti, an attorney with Polster, Lieder, Woodruff & Lucchesi, talked with the women about intellectual property and other legal concerns.

Linda Jacobsen, founder and president of Global Vision Strategies, delivered information on global business and cultural diversity.

Norma Boozer of National City Bank spoke on building business and personal credit.

Mary Baum of Mary Baum Creative Services did a presentation on marketing and market research.

A graduation ceremony was held at the Airport Renaissance Hotel for the women entrepreneurs who participated. Kathy Lambert, co-director of Connections to Success, gave the welcome and introduced Khrys Vaughan. Vaughan shared her passion about women’s economic status in this world through the statics she shared.

She said, “70 percent of the world’s population is in poverty and two-thirds of those are women.” Vaughan shared a story about a woman in Ghana who used an empty water bottle to start a pancake business, which allowed her to support her family.

Angela Lieb of LifeWorks Business Center was the keynote speaker for the graduation. Lieb told graduates, “This is the best time to start a business, despite the economy.”

Lieb shared the five keys to success for entrepreneurs n character, networking, experience, resources and personal brand. She said that it is important to have multiple streams of incomes: “You’ve got to have a couple of buckets.”

Lieb encouraged the graduates to admire women who continue to thrive despite their circumstances, like the woman from Ghana in the story Vaughan shared. She also said that new entrepreneurs should not be scared because “your experience is unique and valuable.”

Lieb asked the graduates to do a 30-second introduction. Ronda Fitch of My Kitchen to Yours said she wants people to have fun in the kitchen, bringing families back to the table. Her vision for giving back is to be able to assist people with utility bills so they can cook and be comfortable. Samples of her zucchini and banana nut bread were delicious. She sold all 20 loaves before the ceremony ended.

Entrepreneur graduate Jana Gamble is launching a new venture, One World One Race, to promote diversity, unity, equality and spirituality.

Anne Murray will soon launch Knights by Murray, providing medical garments for men in the health care industry. She states her clothes will “bring out the Knight” in men. Murray will give back by working with ex-offenders of non-violent crimes that are re-entering society.

Kari Pruitt, owner of Kari of Denmark, has an organizing and cleaning business, but also stages homes. She said she is organizing this town one space at a time. Pruitt wants to give back to the community by holding free seminars on organization for women.

Minister Gwendolyn Foster is giving back through her ministry, Set the Caged Bird Free, by providing services for the ensnared and emotionally wounded.

Joyce Marchand of Inspire Me Photography assists organizations with fundraisers combining her inspirational photography with motivational or scriptural prose.

Unfortunately, Kim Manoogian, life coach, was unable to attend the graduation.

For more information about Her Startup or 90 Days to Launch, contact Khrys Vaughan at 314-714-5675 or email Khrys@herstartup.com

Reprinted From the St. Louis American

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3 degress of Giving Through Networking

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on July 31, 2010

Based on a presentation at Dare to Soar by Karen Hoffman and Donna Gamanche.
women networking Pictures, Images and Photos

Networking can be done anywhere. You can network at the grocery store, church, gym and mall. Networking is about building a relationship with others. Relationship networking begins where you are and grows as you concentrate on others first.

The first tool you need to network is a common interest. So ask questions about the other person. It can be something as simple as ” Hello, how can I help you today?” This opens the doors of conversation and gives you the opportunity to help others.

Here some example questions to ask.

* What is your favorite color and why?
* If you were a candy bar, what kind would you be and why?
* Where were you born?

Here are some suggestions on how to introduce yourself.

* Tell your name
* Tell what you do

Here is something powerful to think about: Statistics show that most people know 250 other people.

Adapted From Worksheet and Exercise at Connections to Success Dare to Soar ( 2nd annual Women’s Conference)

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Don’t Quit Now!

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on July 30, 2010

Don’t Quit Now!

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God,

you will receive what he has promised.

HEBREWS 10:35-36

The latest article was not going well. I needed fresh ideas, but every thing my fingers produced was stale. Ah, Lord, whatever made me think I could write anyway? seemed to be my most persistent prayer.

Then in the middle of that sluggish Saturday morning, my daughter, Holly, arrived and insisted we go horseback riding. “Might as well,” I muttered. “I’m not getting anything accomplished here.”

Within the hour, we were at our favorite stable, but the docile horse I usually rode was already on the trail for the entire day. There was nothing to do but request the second most docile. Soon a large black horse was being led toward me. We eyed each other for a moment, and then I took the reins and led him to the mounting block.

There, I placed my left foot in the stirrup and had just started to swing my right leg over the saddle when the horse decided he didn’t want me on his back. And he cleverly—and quickly—began to sidestep away from the block. There I was, one foot in the stirrup and the other poised in midair. I didn’t have the agility—nor the dainty figure—to shift my weight quickly and throw myself into the saddle. Instead, I was perched in midair for several moments.

The stable owner stood below me, arms in the air as though to catch me when I fell. There was only one convenient part of my anatomy to push, but he knew me well enough not to try that. So with arms waving, he hopped from foot to foot and yelled, “Don’t quit now, ma’am! Don’t quit now!”

Holly was bent forward in her own saddle, howling with laughter at the scene, so of course, I started chuckling and then had an even tougher time hauling myself into position. But at last, I shoved my foot into the stirrup, the horse gave a defeated snort, and I turned his head toward the trail.

Right then I knew the ride, even with its tenuous start, was exactly what I needed to finish my assignment. Besides, I had too much time and effort already invested in the project to abandon it. I whispered, “Thank you, Lord,” and then, calling a robust “Don’t quit now!” I followed a still-laughing Holly up the trail.

Now whenever I’m tempted to quit—whether in the middle of an endeavor or one of life’s challenges—I remind myself of that experience and the words of the stable owner. “Don’t quit now!” is a phrase we’d all do well to remember when times get tough.

Excerpt from Sandra P Aldrich From One Single Mother to Another: Heartlifting Encouragement and Practical Advice

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Inspirations from an Everyday Woman

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on July 28, 2010

PWG brings us endless opportunities for growth especially through our guest speakers. Reflect on the quotes from these two wonderful women: Khrys Vaughn says, “What’s in your hand?” and Erin Joy reminds us “You are what you’ve been looking for!”

Ladies, we all need to begin OWNING the gifts, talents, skills and abilities that we already possess! Do you truly own what’s already in your hand? Are you using all of your skills to launch that business you’ve been dreaming about? Like Erin told us, “you ARE what you’ve been looking for!”
Make a list of all of your gifts, talents, skills and abilities. Then next to each of them write down the last time you actually used them. Let’s make a conscious effort to maximize all the greatness that we have been given. And don’t forget to encourage your fellow sisters to capitalize on theirs as well! We ARE powerful beyond measure!!

Jana Gamble, is a Midwest Professional Women’s  Group Member. She is the author of three books, I am a child of God, 107 ways to Give When You Think You Have Nothing to Give and Capture your Giving and Blessing, A Journaling  Journey to new discovery. Gamble writes a column in the monthly Connections Newsletter entitled “Inspirations from an Everyday Woman.”

Featured in the current PWG Newsletter

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Habits of Highly Empowered Women

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on July 25, 2010

Each year, we make resolutions that are more task oriented than centered around the kind of life we want to live. We want to be thinner, to stop smoking, to get that promotion, et cetera and wonder why we become even more stressed along the way to achieving what we think we want. Perhaps what we truly want is to be healthy, instead of simply losing weight. To feel a sense of accomplishment and receive recognition, instead of the promotion that will only take us further away from our families.

Allow me to challenge you to make resolutions of a different kind. Resolve to be kind yourself, to make progress in quiet ways to that although subtle, do not go unnoticed. Make resolutions tha will lead you to the life you truly want to live if practice on a consistent basis, and those that empower in spite of the past or current circumstances.

Here’s to a Wonderful You!

Khrys

Habits of Highly Empowered Women

  1. Know who you are and who you were created to be . You have a purpose and a future. Do not leave it up to others to determine either of these for you.
  2. Live Beyond your past instead of being defined by it.
  3. Find a cause greater than yourself and get involved. Help make a life better for someone else.
  4. Be committed to your own personal growth and development.
  5. Honor your commitments and responsibilities, but not be afraid to delegate or ask for help.
  6. Build integrity and character by honoring your word.
  7. Build a network of support for all areas of your life.

Life in itself is a process so remember to be kind to yourself during times when you feel you fall short. Enjoy it to best of your abilities and do not ever give up for tomorrow is only a day away.

Her Startup Her Startup helps women realize greater impact via the launch and growth of socially aware companies. By providing Training, Support and Consultation to Female Entrepreneurs and Women Business Owners, we encourage them to develop companies that engage the world around them, and embrace business practices that are both sustainable and ethical. Visit http://www.HerStartup.com for additional info.

www.HerStartup.com

copyright 2007

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The H.O.P.E. Leadership Summit

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on July 25, 2010

Twenty-five thousand (25,000) people have been served by the nonprofit organization “Connections to Success” (CtS) and 242 cars awarded through its“Wheels for Success” program, since opening their doors in 1998. This month, “Connections to Success” (CtS) held its 3rd Annual Women’s Leadership Summit.  The theme for this year was Helping Others Pursue Excellence (H.O. P. E.).  CtS has several different programs that provide resources to empower and encourage men and women to break the cycle of poverty one family at a time.

Kathy Lambert, CTS Co-Director expressed, “This year’s H.O.P.E.  Summit is very special because the Leading Ladies and members of the Professional Women’s Group were instrumental in the planning and execution of the whole event.” KMOV’s Kristin Cornett and Anne Murray, a graduate of CtS 2005-2006 Leading Ladies program, served as emcee for the event.    Leading Ladies is a 9-month intensive course where women learn about the different aspects of community leadership.

Molly Bunton from Charlie Dooley’s (St. Louis County Executive) office presented a proclamation stating that it was Connections to Success Third Annual Entry Level Women’s Conference day.

Michelle Y. Wright gave a presentation entitled “I’m Every Woman.”  She talked about the various roles women play in society and gave strategies to encourage and empower women in all that they do.   Vision 5 from Christian Embassy Church performed a moving inspirational dance routine.

Lethia Owens, an author, motivational speaker and founder of Lethia Owens International was the key note speaker. Owens shared her personal success story of how, despite the obstacles of being a teenage mom,  she became a high school graduate with an academic scholarship to Albany University. She shared her formula of action which leads to success and wealth. Owens calls the formula the 3 simple D’s.   She explained how after graduation from high school she defined what she wanted to achieve. She didn’t settle for being busy as an employee and dare to be a business owner. She shared her journey of how she transitioned from a six figure corporate employee to the owner of two thriving enterprises.

Donna Gamache of  EWomen Network and Karen Hoffman of City of Experts shared about the power of networking.  Hoffman said, People hire people, 70% of people receive employment through networking.  They also demonstrated through role play good and bad networking skills.  Hoffman stressed, the key to networking is asking “how can I help you.”

Teresa Willis talked about “Missouri Women in Trades,” a support and advocacy organization for women in trades.  Ms. Willis explained all the programs that  Missouri Women in Trades is involved in, from helping women get  construction work clothing to accepting donations of old tools to support the organization. She states she wants to help women to be more comfortable working in the construction field from work environment to clothing designed with them in mind.   Vycky Vaughan shared her experience as a participant in Construction Camp which is a five-day camp where high school girls are introduced to welding, carpentry and electrical work.

The H.O.P.E. Leadership summit ended with a fashion show “Hatitude with an Attitude” organized by Leading Lady graduate Sandra  Mc Clendon.  The models were women from Leading Ladies and Professional Women’s Group.  Some of the hats modeled were designed by Mr.  Song Millinery. He is  famous for the hat he designed for Aretha Franklin to wear at president Obama’s inauguration. The hats were provided by Sew Unique Boutique.

The Professional Women’s Group meets monthly in East St. Louis, St. Louis, and St. Charles.  Contact the Connections to Success office for more information at (314) 333-4490

Twenty-five thousand people have been served by the nonprofit organization “Connections to Success” (CtS) and 242 cars awarded through its“Wheels for Success” program, since opening their doors in 1998. This month, “Connections to Success” (CtS) held its 3rd Annual Women’s Leadership Summit.  The theme for this year was Helping Others Purse Excellence (H.O. P. E.).  CtS has several different programs that provide resources to empower and encourage men and women to break the cycle of poverty one family at a time.

Kathy Lambert, CTS Co-Director expressed, “This year’s H.O.P.E.  Summit is very special because the Leading Ladies and members of the Professional Women’s Group were instrumental in the planning and execution of the whole event.” KMOV’s Kristin Cornett and Anne Murray, a graduate of CtS 2005-2006 Leading Ladies program, served as emcee for the event.    Leading Ladies is a 9-month intensive course where women learn about the different aspects of community leadership.

Molly Bunton from Charlie Dooley’s (St. Louis County Executive) office presented a proclamation stating that it was Connections to Success Third Annual Entry Level Women’s Conference day.

Michelle Y. Wright gave a presentation entitled “I’m Every Woman.”  She talked about the various roles women play in society and gave strategies to encourage and empower women in all that they do.   Vision 5 from Christian Embassy Church performed a moving inspirational dance routine.

Lethia Owens, an author, motivational speaker and founder of Lethia Ownes International was the key note speaker. Owens shared her personal success story of how despite the obstacles of being a teenage mom she became a high school graduate with an academic scholarship to Albany University. She shared her formula of action which leads to success and wealth. Owens calls the formula the 3 simple D’s.   She explained how after graduation from high school she defined what she wanted to achieve. She didn’t settle for being busy as an employee and Dare to be a business owner. She shared her journey of how she transitioned from a six figure corporate employee to the owner of two thriving enterprises.

Donna Gamache of  e Women Network and Karen Hoffman of City of Experts shared about the power of networking.  Hoffman said, People hire people, 70% of people receive employment through networking.  They also demonstrated through role play good and bad networking skills.  Hoffman stressed, the key to networking is asking “how can I help you.”

Teresa Willis talked about “Missouri Women in Trades,” a support and advocacy organization for women in trades.  Willis explained all the programs that  MO Women in Trades is involved i , from helping women get  construction work clothing to accepting donations of old tools to support the organization. She states she wants to help women to be more comfortable working in the construction field from work environment to clothing designed with them in mind.   Vycky Vaughan shared her experience as a participant in Construction Camp which is a five-day camp where high school girls are introduced to welding, carpentry and electrical work.

.

The H.O.P.E. Leadership summit ended with a fashion show “Hatitude with an Attitude” organized by Leading Lady graduate Sandra Mc Clendon.  The models were women from Leading Ladies and Professional Women’s group.  Some of the hats modeled were designed by Mr.  Song Millinery. He is  famous for the hat he designed for Aretha Franklin to wear at president Obama’s inauguration. The hats were provided by Sew Unique Boutique.

The Professional Women’s Group meets monthly in east St. Louis, St. Louis, and St. Charles.  Contact Connections to Success office for more information at (314) 333-4490

Written By

Ly Syin Lobster, is member of  Midwest Professional Women’s Group. She has been elected as the 2011 Midwest Delegate and assigned the task of leading the 2011 Community Action Project.

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