Promoting women’s global entrepreneurial and social success, the Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women (IEEW) is hosting the fourth annual Jewel Fashion Show at Liberté clothing boutique on Classen Curve.
Tuesday’s event spotlights students in IEEW’s Peace Through Business Program, as well as the latest fashions from metro boutiques and shops.
A lifelong acolyte for women’s success, Terry Neese founded the organization to empower businesswomen in developing nations to become capable leaders in their communities.
“Entrepreneurship is freedom,” said Neese, who is IEEW’s CEO. “To pull from what Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush have said, it’s important that half of the world’s population participates in the global market.”
The Jewel Fashion Show will feature business owners from Afghanistan and Rwanda. Women from the two countries are selected to take part in a mentorship with an American business owner to expand their own companies back home.
Peace Through Business sponsors and mentors ensure the graduating women are able to pay it forward by passing on knowledge to both men and women in their home countries.
In addition to making sure the students’ new skills contribute to their country’s economic and social states, IEEW coordinators continue to monitor the success of graduates after they return home.
“Eighty percent of our students’ businesses are still running and successful today, seven years after starting the program,” said Neese.
Adjusting to life in the U.S. is part of the program, as well as learning to be more assertive as a businesswoman, Neese explained.
“When Peace Through Business students come to America, they are amazed at how much we’re willing to open up our lives, families, homes and careers to help them so they can learn,” said Neese. “Students learn the benefits of networking with other business owners, especially with other women in business.
One of IEEW’s proponents, Liberté owner Danielle Keogh, wanted to show her support by hosting the fashion show at her place of business.
“Liberté is all about empowering women and supporting women’s independence, and that is in line with IEEW, so I couldn’t see a better fit for hosting an event,” said Keogh. “Helping other women is so important to me. The better we become as women now, the better the next generations will be.”
Liberté contributed clothing and accessories, which will be shown by models from the Brink Modeling Agency.
The event also will feature live music, art displays and an auction.
Everything featured at the show is available for sale. Twenty percent of all purchases go to further IEEW’s mission.