Bello has been a long time proponent of helping women in Haiti and has vowed to keep a hand in their progress and advancement. It is no secret that women in Haiti are constantly underrepresented, especially when it comes to special women’s groups.
According to Bello,
“We were pissed off that the women’s groups (in Haiti), who were most organized, weren’t getting the access and funding they deserved,”
Bello’s struggles as an avid humanitarian definitely did not go unheard. As mentioned in an article written for Yahoo! News, she got the attention of a very powerful and potential ally, Oprah.
At this point, Bella and Winfrey both discussed different issues concerning Haitian women and how to bring them enlightenment. Bello decided she would be able to make the best progress through social media. She was exactly right. Maria Bello co-founded We Advance, a movement who’s mission is to advance the well being and health of women throughout the country of Haiti. The amazing reach of this movement allows local women’s groups to connect with others that are miles away. As stated on We Advance’s website, their ultimate goal is to one day have the ability to leave the programs in the hands of Haitian women.
There are multiple uses for the site. It can be used as a directory in order to find the nearby and/or distant services available to women depending on their needs, such as finding locations to get tested for diseases or cholera. It can also be used as an educational tool. The site offers its newest addition, an ambulance service. The Port-au-Prince based program provides services that include baby well being, emergency services and home visits to name a few. One of the best sections of the site is to actually get to read about the success the program has had so far. They include a pretty impressive list.
Social media is clearly one of the most unique and innovative ways to gain exposure and connect with the world. It’s just that much more amazing to see what it can do from an empowerment point of view. The motto for We Advance includes the most relevant representation of the women of Haiti.
We Are Stronger Together Than We Are Alone.