GIVING MATIN MAULAWIZADA + AFGHAN HANDS

What is Afghan Hands?
First thing to know is that Afghan Hands is a nonprofit organization that teaches women to earn a living. It is not a charity as one might think. Every member of our  Afghan Hands family earns their money by studying and/or working for the Afghan Hands project. The goal is to give a hand up, not a hand down to participants. We are primarily a literacy project for adult women that could not get an education due to war and the closure of girls school during the Taliban, and later due to post-war societal issues. We started in 2004 with five widows and quickly grew to 40. We also fine-tuned their embroidery skills in order for them to earn a living so they are not burdens to their family any longer and quickly become financial assets.

What are the biggest challenges for women today in Afghanistan?
Gender discrimination is a class issue in Afghanistan for the most part. Educated women can hold jobs as high as they wish. This reflects sexism as a class and financial construct in Afghanistan. Education is the only way out of that loop.

What makes the work that Afghan Hands does unique to other organizations that are there to help?
We are a grassroots organization that prides itself on being sustainable without the help of government, military or other types of sponsors. On one hand we pride ourselves on Continue reading

GIVING: DR. BRANDT FOUNDATION

Born in New Jersey on June 26, 1949, Fredric Brandt set out to change the beauty world and change it he did. After graduating from Hahnemann Medical College, Brandt held residencies at New York University and The University of Miami. In 1982 he opened his first practice in Miami and later, in 1998 set his sights on New York. As a cancer researcher specializing in Leukemia at the renowned Memorial Sloan- Kettering Hospital in New York City, Dr. Brandt began his discovery of natural antioxidants to fight free radical damage. This work would be the catalyst for the development of his eponymous skincare line.

Brandt’s cutting edge artistic approach set him apart from the rest of the industry. This included being the first person to incorporate the healing power of green tea into skincare. He launched the first ever in home treatments and peels allowing his clients to treat themselves from the comfort of their own personal space.

His client base became the biggest names in Hollywood and he became a celebrity among them in his own right. He would even joke with journalists, asking Continue reading