Tag Archives: supportive homes

Lives Are Being Changed!

Victory Women in Development Association (ViWiDA)-USA   is designed to enrich and change lives; specifically, targeting Women and Youths. Unlike competitors of VIWIDA-USA, programs offered by VIWIDA are unique because of the heritage/culture from which it is derived.

dina1In 1998, the founder, Dinnah Walton who is a CFO for Victory Women in Development Association VIWIDA USA, returned home to Tanzania, East Africa after sixteen years of residing in the United States. When she got home she found that since she first left the country, the living conditions in Tanzania have deteriorated further into extreme poverty, political disharmony, with HIV aids diseases running rampage among other things.

Albeit the democratization of the government and the privatization of businesses in Tanzania seemed to have changed the social climate; AIDS, lack of decent education, and extreme poverty continues to run amok.  It became apparent that the values, integrity and aspirations of a greater Tanzania, including the island of Zanzibar have been lost.  Aids, famine, and diseases are taking lives every day as 1.3 million people are affected with HIV/AIDS in Tanzania. Children of the effected remain homeless; so many of them are orphans left behind by their dying relatives. Large percentage of Youth are lacking education, and direction in their daily lives; while, most women remain not only uneducated and married young, but also are victims of either domestic violence or trafficking.

Even with modern technologies reaching the people of Tanzania; most of them are unable to capitalize on these resources because of sub-par education achievement, and political tension that has been brewing for almost half a century, because of the union between the Tanganyika and Zanzibar governments when they formed Tanzania early in 1960s.

Education standards in Tanzania are far below international standards. Many schools lack basic resources; operating without books or even desks, forcing dedicated students to learn while sitting on classroom floors, which may or may not be a finished concrete floor. Meanwhile teachers go months without pay, and whom they themselves may be lacking in the skills to efficiently train students.  While mainland Tanzania is utilizing what resources they have to improve education, the island of Zanzibar is lagging far behind because of political tensions between the Zanzibar and the government of Tanzania as mentioned earlier.

On returning to United States, Dinnah decided to do something to change the situation in Tanzania, but in doing so became aware to similar hardships faced by people at her home, in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas. Thus, Dinnah felt compelled to create the nonprofit organization that would work to combat homelessness, extreme poverty, and empower women, youth, underprivileged by helping get the resources they need. For example transitional housing for homeless individuals, life skills to empower women, and helping to close the education achievement gap among urban youth in America and in Tanzania, E Africa.  After much collaboration with dedicated people in the community she serve, and the support of family and friends, Victory Women in Development Association,(ViWiDA) U.S.A. was formed in 2001 by Dinnah and other two founders, Dr. Alwiya Omar and Edythe Shapiro; with the help of Mr. Ari Merratezon, a dedicated community developer and U.S. Veteran.

Today, ViWiDA-USA provides programs to empower Women,Youth and Underprivileged individuals in Local and International Communities. For example, The Youth Educational & Exchange Program, which is a 9 month curriculum designed to enrich inner city education with cultures exposures and offering students a chance to learn how they can help other people not only in their communities, but to learn about the hardships shared by people in Tanzania, Africa, and the world in general. Participants are empowered through volunteerism and willingness to serve the human kind. The programs encourage participants to own businesses also.

A special note from the founder:-  ” I wish some women and men around the world will adopt the same kind of an organization which is victorious to women, youth and empowering communities. They can copy what we do, and may be we will hear about Victory Women in Development Association ViWiDA-Japan, or ViWiDA-Europe, ViWiDA-China, ViWiDA Malaysia, ViWiDA-Asia, India, or ViWiDA-Africa and so on. Let the movement to Empower Women and Youth grow around the world till there is PEACE; till Women are no longer VICTIMS of Impunity; till Youth are empower to create a better world for their parents; till Poverty and Diseases are no longer a problem to humanity!” – dswalton @ ViWiDA-USA

VIWIDA-USA improves and enriches the life experiences of Women and Youth across the globe.

Some of the initiatives of VIWIDA-USA includes:-

Empowering Women Program designed to help women become independent, escape domestic violence, learn the skills to find better jobs. The program also works to educate women on high risk medical conditions, as well as provide free or low cost individual counseling and support groups. VIWIDA   empowers, also encourages women, and youth to be Industrialists.

How Banks Can Finance Permanent Supportive Housing by usichgov

 Ending Youth Homelessness by 2020


The VIWIDA-USA Youth Educational & Exchange Program is conducted through the coordination of MLADEF (formerly VIWIDA Tanzania); Mizat Tours & Travels, and other collaborators of VIWIDA.

This Video Was envisaged in my house by My Son MoWalton & his FRIENDS.  2012 Election-YOUTH EMPOWERMENT-MALARKEY is not! @ VIWIDA-USA! DEBATE 2012 – OBAMA V/S ROMNEY RAP BATTLE….


Philly Is Number One in Poverty, Which is Awful!! – Voices from those without homes..

The story below appeared in the “One Step Away” magazine, which is a greater philadelphia’s first newspaper produced by those without homes for those with homes. The story was featured April 2013 under heading “Our Voice – What we want people who have roofs over their heads to hear from us”

Philadelphia has the highest rate of deep poverty – people with incomes below half of the poverty line- of any big city in the country, according to a study by The Philadelphia Inquirer and Temple University sociologist David Elesh. Inquirer reporter Alfred Lubrano’s story was chilling; he described people going without food, living without running water or electricity, juggling a number of awful paying jobs that simply don’t make ends meet. The impact on children of families living in deep poverty is an absolute crisis in our city.

Philadelphia has the highest povery rate (28.4 percent) of America’s big cities. Almost 13 percent of Philadelphians are living in “deep poverty”. That’s more than 200,000 of our neighbors and fellow citizens who earn less tha $5,700 per year (individuals) or less than $11,700 for a family of four.

While people who qualify as poor can and often do lift themselves out of poverty, this pernicious state of “deep poverty” is statistically inescapable. Judith Levine, a Temple sociologist, told the Inquirer: “Poverty becomes a long-term experience, and it’s very different, especially for children”. We are dooming thousands of children to a lifetime of sever poverty, with unimaginable long-term consequences.

So, Let’s talk solutions.

Government programs have been wildly successful in fighting poverty. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reported last year that pover rates without government income assistance of any sort would have been nearly twice as high as they actually were: 28.6 percent rather than 15.5 percent. That’s the impact of publich programs such as General Assistance, unemployment insurance, SNAP benefits (food stamps), Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, veteran’s benefits, public assistance (most importantly including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) and housing assistance. These programs work.

You know what’s weird? These are the very programs we’ve spent the last few years cutting. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett has personally been slashing this stuff as fast as he can.  And in a stunning upset, when you cut anti-poverty programs, you get more poverty.  It’s science…..

An Assessment of the Effectiveness of Anti Poverty Programs in the United States by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that the combination of the means-tested and social insurance transfers had a major impact on povery, reducing deep poverty, poverty, and near-poverty rates by about 14 percentage points. SSI, TANF, food stamps, Earned Income Tax Credit, and housing assistance programs all have significant impacts.

The rise of the EITC and decline of Aid to Families with Dependent Children/TANF and food stamps for the very poor is a regressive combination. The report found a notable shift in expenditures toward the elderly and disabled and away from people who are just plain poor. In 1984, programs reduced poverty much more among single parent families and the nonemployed than they did 20 years later, a direct result of this kind of shift in government policy

Look, cash assistance to the poor, specifically nonworkers, can feel kind of unseemly. The system has always preferred “in kind transfers”, things such as food, medical care, housing. These things help people survive, but don’t move them. They don’t lift people out of poverty.

Conservative economist Milton Friedman consistently supported a “negative income tax”, endorsing the kinds of cash transfers we’ve consistently moved away from. Bolsa Familia in Brazil and Oportunidades in Mexico, which are essentially cash grants to the poor, have been wildly successful in eliminating poverty in those countries. We just don’t have the political will for that sort of thing here.

In the end, then, America sufferes from a kind of deliberate malpractice – we know what works, we’ve seen it work, we’re just deciding not to do so much of it, anymore.

Let’s restore the safety net, invest in people, and knock Philly off the top spot of this really awful list.