Women make less money the world over. Why? In Japan, the society expects women to marry and quit work when they start a family. Gender discrimination is not only institutionalized, it is justified by stressing that giving women career opportunities and compensation equal to men who eventually support the family solo, is a losing investment. Is the American society the same? Are we taking away time and opportunities for women to learn, simply because we “naturally” expect them to take a bigger share in managing the household or caring for everybody else’s needs?
4Ever 40 Sisterhood Association Inc., a volunteer group of women of all ages and ethnicities says that this is none more pronounced than among minority groups, recent immigrants and refugees. Women who are paid less get hired sooner than men in the family do, yet duty-bound to nurture the family as well.
4Ever 40 Sisterhood women also believe that the reason for the income gap and difference in potential career advancement is even more basic for minority groups. Aside from language and cultural barriers, the lack of learning opportunities or time and wherewithal to access resources can be daunting.
To help women overcome this hurdle, 4Ever 40 Sisterhood organizes short training courses and classes to empower women (young and old, just starting out or undergoing major life changes like becoming a single parent, going through divorce, or retirement) with basic financial education and management skills even before effectively providing hands-on courses on entrepreneurship and creativity. Now more than ever, women navigating the current financial and global economic realities need to be empowered with knowledge and skills to fulfill roles traditionally assigned to women, and still be able to successfully provide for their dependents.