Grassroots Partnerships for Global Change

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Rooted in the Power of Communities

Since 2002, the Chicago-based Goldin Institute has inspired, equipped and connected grassroots leaders in over 40 countries to lead community driven social change.

Malya Villard-Appolon

Global Associate Malya Villard-Appolon began her partnership with the Goldin Institute shortly after the 2010 Earthquake in Haiti, which demanded an immediate response to the gender-based violence that arose in the displaced persons camps. As the co-founder of KOFAVIV (Commission of Women Victims for Victims), Malya was able to build and support a women-led, community-based security platform, organizing and training volunteers from within the camps. This project led by Malya and her team resulted in a drastic reduction in violence towards women and young girls and the total prevention of new rape cases within the Place Petion Camp. The methods developed by KOFAVIV became the strategic model for other communities facing the same issues of violence towards women. In 2012, Malya received much-deserved praise for her work by being named a recipient of the CNN Hero Award. Malya continues to be a fearless voice and proponent for victims of sexual violence and has most recently used her notoriety to expand her positive message to a wider audience.

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