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Haitian Women Around the Globe Are Uniting to Move the Nation Forward


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Article By: Shaïna Silva

A new platform emerges to unify Haitian women leaders around the world. The #SHE_BUILDS Global initiative, founded in June 2018 by Shaina Silva– a young Haitian American futurist based in San Francisco — is launching at the Mozilla virtual reality studio in the heart of San Francisco on August 24th 2018. Designed to be a bridge between Haitian women across the global diaspora and in Haiti, the platform aims to be a catalyst for accelerated nation building.

To commemorate the launch, Haitians and friends of Haiti in the San Francisco Bay Area will gather to celebrate Haitian women professionals and entrepreneurs who are leading in their fields. The evening’s fireside chats include two emerging Haitian American tech entrepreneurs: Martina Abrahams Ilunga, Founder of “You had me at Black” and senior product marketing manager at Square, and Clorama Dorvilias: Haitian-Eritrean Virtual Reality designer, winner of Oculus Launch XRStudio and Founder of Debias VR. The fireside chat will be moderated by the #SHE_BUILDS San Francisco Chapter Ambassador, Swanellie Paulin.

The impetus for the platform emerged earlier this year, after a discussion that sparked around an article written by Shaina on International Women’s month. The article showcased the vision that a small group of Haitian women have for Haiti, illustrating their diverse backgrounds and impact on the Haitian community.From Cap-Haitian to New York, Paris to Abidjan, Haitian ladies across the globe were eager to connect and collaborate after reading about one another’s vision for Haiti. Following that momentum, the platform was established to take into account the various needs expressed by the community of women. More on the platform’s objectives can be found on the website (shebuildsinitiative.com).

The initiative would not be complete without honoring the legacy of powerhouse women who have been blazing the trail for decades. As such, #SHE_BUILDS welcomes an advisory board of remarkable  “Legacy Matriarchs” including Danielle St Lot and Maryse Penette Kedar who will provide sound counsel to the group and facilitate access to local initiatives and networks across various industries through which the community can connect and contribute to.

In the next 3 months, 14 Chapter Ambassadors across the globe will be activating their cities. The current chapters include:

  1. Swanellie Paulin, Chapter Ambassador – San Francisco
  2. Kathleen Gonzales, Chapter Ambassador – Los Angeles
  3. Vanessa Philogene, Chapter Ambassador – Indianapolis
  4. Cassandre Theano, Chapter Ambassador – New York City
  5. Rebecca Obounou, Chapter Ambassador – Boston
  6. Aurelie Mathieu, Chapter Ambassador – Washington DC
  7. Sabrina Depestre, Chapter Ambassador – Baltimore
  8. Dominique Jean-Jacques, Chapter Ambassador – West Palm Beach
  9. Santra Denis, Chapter Ambassador – Miami
  10. Maritza Boudoir, Chapter Ambassador – Cap Haitian
  11. Nathalie Marc-Charles Arias, Chapter Ambassador – Port-au-Prince
  12. Nedgine Paul-Deroly, Chapter Ambassador – Gonaives
  13. Carla Beauvais, Chapter Ambassador – Montreal
  14. Shaina Baron, Chapter Ambassador – Abidjan

Shaïna Silva
Shaïna Silva

Founder, #SHE_BUILDS Global Initiative

An Ecosystem Architect and Industry Innovation Strategist who has dedicated her career towards creating pathways to opportunities in the word’s Emerging Markets, and leading the transition towards the 4th industrial revolution.

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