The March edition is all about women! This month we chose a woman that empowers girls and women to build bigger and better futures for themselves, their communities, and the world.
Meet March’s cover: Vivian Glyck the founder of Just Like My Child Foundation (JLMC). Just Like My Child’s mission is to empower vulnerable adolescent girls by enabling them to create healthy families who prosper without further aid. JLMC does this by providing vulnerable girls in Uganda with transformational empowerment education through its Girl Power Project®. This enables girls to stay in school, avoid forced child marriage, gender-based violence and disease, and in turn have healthier families when they are ready to, not when they are forced to. The impact is real with over 200,000 families, mothers, and community members benefiting from the work of JLMC, and 5,000 girls have graduated from the two-year-long Girl Power Project® training.
Vivian was inspired to start JLMC after the birth of her own son when she realized all children are “just like my child” and after she suffered two subsequent miscarriages. Through the hardship of the miscarriages, she realized that she didn’t only want one more child but 10,000 kids. Driven by a desire to “bear witness” to the suffering of children in Africa, Vivian visited Uganda. After she started working there, she knew something had to be done to empower girls. The moment that inspired the Girl Power Project® was when she watched a group of girls sitting in a field learning what sexual abuse is from a facilitator who explained it to them. When asked how many girls had experienced abuse themselves, out of a group of twenty school girls, every girl raised their hand.
Vivian created JLMC’s Girl Power Project® to reach many girls, but to impact each girl individually. This is why their slogan is “Transforming the World One Girl at a Time.” Vivian has been honored in multiple publications and received the Woman of Peace Award. When we asked Vivian what she believes has kept Just Like My Child Foundation running for over ten years she told us, “I’ve always run it like an entrepreneurial organization; thinking outside the box in the non-profit world.”
Before Vivian started JLMC, she was a marketing consultant — an entrepreneur herself. She worked with a number of very prominent speakers including Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, Debbie Ford and many more! So when it came to starting the foundation, Vivian knew that the best way to reach the hearts of many was to tell the plight of individual children in ways that anyone can connect with. She reminds us that telling a good story is the best marketing tool available. This allowed donors to create an ongoing connection with the work they were funding and paved the way for the foundation to have a steady stream of donations. Compared to some non-profits and foundations, Vivian chose to run hers like a business and that has led to great success.
Building this foundation has been successful due to Vivian’s marketing experience and the nimble aspect her team brings to the table; by focusing on programs that have major impact, the organization has learned how to tell its story as though it is speaking to one person at a time, and find the donors who are the most likely prospects to invest in the organization on an ongoing basis with multi-year commitments. Vivian also emphasizes the importance of her team, and how working with a small, brilliant team of committed individuals has allowed Just Like My Child Foundation to respond quickly and swiftly to all manner of opportunities.
Don’t just take our word for it though! Just Like My Child has: provided over 14,000 mothers with medical care, impacted over 20,000 lives through providing schools and education, helped thousands of HIV+ parents live healthier lives, and over 5000 girls standing up for themselves because of the Girl Power Project®.
Vivian never really wanted to start a foundation. She only wanted to make a change. What she did next is the best thing for any entrepreneur to do! All she did was make the next right decision — and “do the next right thing.” So often we get caught up in the magnitude of our goals that we start to believe they are impossible. Vivian’s advice is to stop yourself from analysis paralysis and just do the next right thing in the daily tasks of entrepreneurship.
Vivian believes in this fact so much that “The Next Right Thing” is the topic of her latest book! Moving forward, Vivian would love to help Just Like my Child Foundation become a self-sustaining organization so it can keep serving the mission as she steps into a more visionary role for the organization. The idea behind Just Like My Child is to help children just like they were your child. Vivian is often asked why don’t you help children right here in the US? Vivian understands the importance of impacting your own community and building the future where you are. Of course, JLMC can’t be everywhere, so to those who ask, she eloquently responds, “Why don’t you?”
This goes along with Vivian’s idea of just doing the next right thing. It doesn’t matter where you are from or where you are going. The only thing you need to do is look inside, and find the right choice for you at the moment that will lead you to the next right choice. This and a supportive community that holds you accountable is what will ultimately bring you the success that you crave.
Having Vivian was such an inspiring experience! Showing the entire Life By Design community that the only thing you need is to make one choice at a time and you can change someone’s world.
So this March we would like to salute Vivian for taking action! For going out and making a better world for all those she can… One girl at a time.
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