Launching a catering business, opening an after-school program, becoming a marketing consultant – all lofty goals for someone just starting out in the business world. But for the low-income, immigrant, and refugee women of Empowered Women International, many of whom have experienced violence and trauma, EWI puts these goals within reach. Entrepreneur Pathways for Women provides the training, mentoring, knowledge, skills, and resources they need to launch their own micro-enterprises and become successful in the workplace. Those who are ready to take their businesses to the next level receive additional training to develop marketing materials, increase sales, and access micro-loans. EWI also provides personal mentoring, referrals, and skill-building workshops to over 300 students, alumni, and community members each year. In 2015, 71% of EWI women reported an increase in income, a better job, or enrollment in an educational program. With increased confidence and self-esteem, these graduates launch new businesses, find new success in the workplace, and become agents of change in their communities. You can join them.

Headquarters: VA-City of Alexandria

Where They Operate: MD-Montgomery County; VA-Fairfax County; VA-City of Alexandria

Age Groups Served: Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+)

Population(s) Served: Women/Girls; Immigrants/Refugees; Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members

Awards & Recognition

2011 Living Legends of Alexandria, Marga Fripp 2011 Nominee
2010 Arts Build Communities Award: Rising Star Finalist - Virginians for the Arts

2009 Alex Arts Awards – City of Alexandria’s Commission for the Arts
2009 Bruce Oliver Business Leadership Award Finalist for partnership with West Potomac Academy High School - Fairfax County Public Schools

2008 Enterprise Award – Catalogue for Philanthropy
2008 Selected for the 2007-2008 Catalogue for Philanthropy

2006 Virginia House and Senate Commendation for outstanding achievements in the community and for promoting the arts and cultures of immigrant and refugee women artists – The Commonwealth of Virginia House and Senate

2006 Making a Difference for Women Award – Soroptimist International

2005 Cultural Affairs Award – Alexandria Commission on Women

2003 Governor of Maryland’s Award for Service and Volunteerism granted to Marga Frip – The Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism


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Budget (FY2015)

  • $3 million or higher
  • $1 million to $3 million
  • The current budget for Empowered Women International, Inc is: $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $40 million for charities across the Greater Washington region.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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