The historic divestment of women, especially women of color, results in exposing women to higher risks and greater burdens from the impacts of climate change. This story was no different when Miami faced Hurricane Irma in 2017. CLEO’s Empowering Resilient Women was created in its aftermath as a response to the visible gaps that left marginalized communities under-represented and under-supported in emergency preparedness. Women build community cohesion by often playing the role of first responders and caretakers at home. In this way, when women are impacted by the climate crisis, whether through extreme heat, intensified hurricanes, or asthma exacerbated by air pollution… our communities feel the ripple effects.
In 2020, CLEO launched a new version of Empowering Resilient Women (ERW) program in Miami, Orlando, and Tallahassee with food security as an added component after COVID-19 made evident how fragile our food systems truly are.
ERW is based on 4 pillars explored in each of the online workshops: We LEARN, We CONNECT, We PREPARE and We LEAD. Supplementing group discussions online, the cohort meets 2-3 times in person at a local garden to build capacity in their urban gardening skills.