IT’S TIME TO CELEBRATE 👏🎉💐 !!!  I am delighted to announce that Ellen Monaghan and Leslie Buckle, founders of UJAMAA GRANDMAS, will be the recipients of the Soroptimist Calgary Dreams “Making a Difference for Women Award” on April 18th. This award honours women who have made extraordinary differences in, and improved the lives of, women and girls.

Inspired by Stephen Lewis and his vision for the Stephen Lewis Foundation (SLF), long-time friends Ellen and Leslie began making bags and purses, selling them at a local market and donating the profits to the fledgling SLF in 2004/2005.   With their passion to support the African Grandmothers, their persuasive powers soon attracted others to join them and now we have close to 500 members.  We continue to raise funds through creative events and activities, and to date, we have raised $1.5 million for African grassroots groups.  We also raise awareness of the issues faced by African women through education, by speaking to community groups and visiting schools.  We definitely thank both Ellen and Leslie for the implementation of their many ideas over the years!

Our lives have improved too!  Many of us have developed deep, rich friendships working together towards Ellen and Leslie’s goal. We have developed and expanded skills and confidence in different areas including handcrafts, public speaking, governance, marketing and technology.

Ellen and Leslie have remained faithful to the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign pledge, “We will not rest until they can rest”.  We thank both of them for their vision and leadership. Congratulations, Ellen and Leslie!

Please feel free to share the link with friends or family to help celebrate Ellen and Leslie as well – they will need to register to reserve a free ticket!