Event Details – Special Guests – Mini-Market – Patron’s Pick – Sponsors
Give the gift of empowerment with every purchase at EWI’s Artisan Gifts & Food Mini Marketplace! Join us for a one of a kind shopping experience to help propel the businesses of local women entrepreneurs.
Discover unique artisan gifts, hear their stories, and watch engaging demonstrations of their craft!
It’s more than just a marketplace. EWI works on women’s economic empowerment, social justice and opportunity for all!
SUZANNE AMOONARQUAH(2014 GMB Graduate, Product Exhibitor)Suzanne is the creator of Aburi Botanicals, a natural body care company with shea butter at the heart of its foundation. She created Aburi Botanicals after an unsuccessful search for natural soaps that cleansed without drying out her skin.. She looked back to the natural remedies used by generations in her own family by making shea butter a staple ingredient in a line of products that would eventually become Aburi Botanicals. Aburi Botanicals is named after a beautiful botanical garden in Suzanne’s native Ghana.
|.||Sunflower Home Organizer LLC
FLORALBA CAMARGO (2013 ETS Graduate, Service Exhibitor, Entrepreneur Panelist)Floralba Camargo is the owner of Sunflower Home Organizer LLC which she founded in 2012. She is very passionate about organization and strives to help people find order in their homes because of the positive impact that it makes in their lives. Living in a functional and clutter-free environment changed Floralba’s life. She experienced first-hand how much more productive she could be with fewer distractions in her house and how much better she felt about herself when everything was organized.Floralba was born in a small town in Colombia, called Paipa. In 1990, she moved to the United States to follow her dreams. Once here, she worked hard to establish a career in the finance industry where she worked for over 15 years. During her free time, Floralba would help family and friends make better use of spaces in their homes, and she grew passionate about organization because she saw the difference it made in people’s lives. She noticed this was something that she genuinely enjoyed doing and that she was naturally good at.
|.||Bev’s Gourmet Salad Creations and Catering
BEVERLY COLEMAN (2017 GMB Student, Culinary Exhibitor)Beverly Coleman is the CEO and Founder of Bev’s Gourmet Salad Creations and Catering. Raised in Detroit, she lived in Chicago for 13 years before moving to DC in 2009 to attend graduate school. By profession, she is a school counselor. Bev developed an interest in food from watching her West Indian (Trinidadian) mother cook when she was a child. The flavorsome smell of the different sauces, ingredients, and aromas, piqued her curiosity and her love of food grew. Upon moving to the DC area, Bev decided to take her entrepreneurial spirit to the next level.She has now been consistently selling salads and catering since 2013. Bev’s uniqueness comes from the love that she pours into her food and the desire to please the palate.
|.||Veez Ties That Bind
VELMA CRAWFORD (2011 ETS & 2013 GMB Graduate, Product Exhibitor)Velma Crawford (“Vee”) is a native of Birmingham, Alabama, and owner of Veez Ties That Bind. After 30 years working for the federal government, she found her passion making beautiful handcrafted aprons from a collage of high quality fabrics. Velma’s business was inspired by her grandmother, the daughter of a freed slave and a mother to sixteen children, seven of whom passed away along with her husband by 1948, leaving her to raise her daughters on her own. In the face of such misfortune, she never faltered or failed. Velma’s new apron collection, “Mattie’s Remnants” continues to be inspired by her grandmother’s love and strength.
|.||Workout Around My Day
CORDELIA GAFFAR (2017 GMB Student, Book Exhibitor)An author, speaker and founder of Workout Around My Day, Cordelia created a seven step process to help moms nourish themselves with wholesome food, energize themselves with movement and encourage themselves with sweet talk. Beginning with a stressful second pregnancy resulting in postpartum depression and excessive weight gain, she started doing research to find the foods and exercises that would help her feel centered, peaceful, and whole. During her fifth pregnancy, she started a blog which she eventually turned into her book, , Workout Around My Day: the Only Health Guide Moms Need. “I feel that moms are the pillars of society,” says Cordelia,“and that is why I want them to create a total system of self-nurturing.”
MARITZA GARCÍA (2016 ETS Graduate & 2017 GMB Student, Product Exhibitor)Marizta Garcia is an artisan from Guatemala and the founder of Miracle Hands. Her handmade candles and the intricate designs on the containers are inspired by her cultural heritage. All of her designs and products are made with materials from America. Each candle is guaranteed to fill your space with wonderful fragrances and original artwork.
|.||Maya’s Georgian Feast Catering
MAYA HALL (2015 ETS & 2016 GMB Graduate, Culinary Exhibitor)Maya has a passion for cooking and loves to introduce people to the exquisite cuisine of her native country, the Republic of Georgia. Maya’s Georgian Feast catering prepares delicious authentic dishes made from fresh natural ingredients, including many vegan and vegetarian items.
DAOUIA IDRIS (2017 ETS Student, Culinary Exhibitor)Daouia was born in Algeria and moved to the USA after she got married to an Algerian citizen. This move changed her life forever from being a single working woman to living with her husband and child in a strange country. She recently started Mediterranean Delights, a bakery that specializes in French pastries and Viennoiserie. She really misses her Algerian culture which is why she has a strong desire to share her baked goods.Daouia has been baking on regular basis from an early age and has always been curious and fascinated by the art and science of making sweets. When she is not baking she spends long hours browsing through blogs looking for new Mediterranean recipes where she sees the beauty of her culture and values. Often her friends have tears in their eyes because her food reminds them of their mothers and their home —and this makes her proud of her work.
|.||Power of Life NOW
RANA JAAFAR YASEEN (2014 ETS Graduate & 2017 GMB Student, Entrepreneurship Panelist)Rana Jaafar Yaseen is the founder and CEO of “Power of Life NOW” for self-development consultation and media. She is originally from Iraq and was relocated to the Washington area as part of UNHCR’s refugee resettlement program in 2013. Ms. Yaseen was a well-known TV Host in the Middle East, award-winning poet, and artist, but her life in the Middle East was full of trauma. Rana was determined, however, to use her creativity to transform her crisis into opportunity. Her passion for transformation and healing has led her to study self-discovery and develop a holistic approach for self-development to reveal personal empowerment, emotional healing and mindfulness. She also founded the “Change Maker, Peace Builder Initiative” to help refugees and immigrants transform challenges into success as they integrate into the US; designed “Language IN The BRAIN,”, to accelerate learning a new language; and designed “The Flavor of the Universe,” a creative and therapeutic poetry and art project.
|.||Min Beirut Cuisine!
SUHA JUNDI (2015 ETS & 2016 GMB Graduate, Culinary Exhibitor) Suha Jundi is the owner of Min Beirut Cuisine! “Tasty Food to Boost Your Mood.” Min Beirut Cuisine creates authentic and innovative Middle Eastern dishes that share the rich cultural heritage and culinary experiences of Lebanon’s capital city of Beirut. Cooking is Suha’s expression of love for people, the key ingredient that makes her dishes memorable.
|.||Henna Artist & EWI Lead Trainer
SHARMILA KARAMCHANDANI (2006 ETS & 2013 GMB Graduate, Lead Trainer, Interactive Exhibitor: Henna)Sharmila Karamchandani, an Indian-born artist and graphic designer has a passion for working in arts education and community non-profits. Sharmila encountered Empowered Women International in Fall of 2006 when she moved to the area after receiving her MFA from Savannah College of Art and Design.She attended the Entrepreneur Training for Success (ETS), which helped her to market herself as an artist and largely credits the organization for her successful career in the US. Since then she has worked at EWI in various capacities including a volunteer, mentor, graphic designer and trainer and was honored with the Creativity and Commitment award in 2008 for her extraordinary service to EWI.Currently, she is the Lead Trainer for the ETS and GMB programs. Sharmila always wanted to be an educator. She teaches Graphic Design at The Art Institute of Washington—Dulles and George Mason University and has received several awards for teaching and leadership since 2007. She is also an artist and works in mediums such as painting, jewelry design, photography, calligraphy, henna painting, mixed media collages, and fiber arts.
|.||Wigglʼ with us!
IQBAL KHAIY (2015 ETS Graduate, Trainer-in-Training, Service Exhibitor & Volunteerism Panelist)Iqbal Khaiy is a yoga instructor, educator and an author who believes in holistic living and is passionate about the intersection of wellness and the built environment (urban planning). Iqbal grew up in Morocco and started gymnastics at age four. She trained with the national gymnastics team and was coached by top-notch trainers. Years later she discovered yoga in the US and loved it. After teaching for more than five years in several community centers, Iqbal founded Wigglʼ with us! to provide yoga training to kids and women. Iqbal has been teaching yoga for over five years and her clients testify that they have benefited greatly from the practice. She encourages students to define goals and build a routine outside the studio. Fairfax County has recognized Iqbal as a leader advocating for physical fitness and community access to a healthy lifestyle.
|.||Lens & Love Photography
LADON JAMES (Interactive exhibitor: Photo Booth, EWI Trainer & Alum)LaDon Love is an innovative entrepreneur who is the founder of Lens & Love Photography and the executive director of several documentaries. She has worked on the local, state and national levels to develop leadership skills and achieve public policy change that has improved the lives of low and moderate income families. When she engages her photography clients, she uses her community organizing expertise to connect with her clients and gain a deep understanding of their needs. As a result, she is able to bring their personality to the photography experience. Additionally, she is the Vice-Chair of the Algebra Project Board of Directors and a founding member of Community Voices Heard. She has received the Shirley Chisholm Leadership and Ms Magazine Woman of the Year awards.
|.||Heart to Heart, An Egyptian Experience Cookbook
AIDA MADY (2012 ETS & 2014 GMB Graduate, Book Exhibitor)As a little girl in Cairo, Aida Mady helped her mother bake and from there her passion blossomed. Aida was the youngest of 8 children and enjoyed baking for relatives, friends, and those in need. Now living in Northern Virginia, Aida, wife, mother of three children, and accomplished home cook, is still baking using the cooking techniques she learned as a child. With training and mentoring from Empowered Women International (EWI), Aida was able to successfully launch her own business, Cooking and Beyond in 2012. In 2016, she completed her cookbook “Heart to Heart, An Egyptian Experience!”, an 18 month illustrated planner.
BRENDA MARCIAL (2014 ETS Graduate, Service Exhibitor)Brenda fell on hard times after her divorce and the loss of her corporate job. Currently she dog, cat, and house sits for affluent residents in Maryland/DC area. She used to consider this a side job, but has received positive feedback and is accumulating many clients by word of mouth. Brenda wants to develop a legitimate business plan for this venture—specifically for dog sitting/walking–and eventually upgrade her business to include pet transportation and pet pampering products.
||Bahari Deco Crafts
MARIAM MOHAMED (2012 ETS & 2013 GMB Graduate, Product Exhibitor)After graduating from the Institute of Finance Management in Tanzania, Mariam worked for a commercial bank, but decided to retire early to focus on her sewing & handicraft business, which allowed her more time to care for her mother. When she moved to the USA, Mariam was determined to give back, and use her work to honor her mother, the person who had introduced her to the arts of textile design and production. Bahari Deco Crafts uses the Kanga and Kitenge cloth, the traditional textiles of the Swahili people, to create a bridge between Tanzania and the USA. Mariam designs and makes most of her products, then works with seamstress in both USA and Tanzania to produce more accessories geared especially for the market in both countries.
|.||The Africa Memory Game
PAULETTE MPOUMA (2011 ETS & 2013 GMB Graduate, Interactive exhibitor: African Memory Game)Paulette Mpouma is originally from Cameroon and has worked for over 15 years to bring the world’s attention to continent of Africa. She works with educational institutions to deepen resources, create materials and distribute them to schools in order to increase education on Africa.Her company, The Africa Memory Game creates games, trivia and educational materials to help young people and families discover Africa. Her first game was very successful and received the Award of Creativity by the Africa Center in Takoma Park, MD. A copy of the Africa memory Game was sent to the White House as a gift to the Obama Family and Paulette Mpouma received 3 invitations to the White House as an African leader of the Diaspora. At Empowered Women International Paulette has served as alumni/mentor to train women entrepreneurs in developing their businesses. She has also worked as liaison between groups of women toy makers in Ivory Coast and the Smithsonian Museums stores in DC.
|.||Random Words Marketing Group
LAURA RAMIREZ DRAIN (2016 GMB Graduate, Service Exhibitor)Random Words Marketing Group offers the knowledge and support to help clients develop their business brand. Founded by Laura Ramirez Drain in 2015, she has been working with an incredible team of freelance experts from around the world. The company offers one-stop marketing services to small businesses that do not have a dedicated marketing department. RWM helps new businesses and growing companies create complete marketing solutions to target attractive customer segments, create their desired image, and strengthen their brand. From creating their logo and launching their first website, to rebranding and helping them re-engage their client-base, RWM supports businesses every step of the way. Laura shared, “Thank you to EWI for helping me grow my business training my business has grown over 200%.”
|.||Women Helping Women Retreats
RAE ROACH (2014 ETS Graduate, Service Exhibitor)Women Helping Women Retreats are a soothing and supportive way to rediscover your natural feminine energy and strength. Nestled in nature and surrounded by like-minded women that can guide you through ways to heal, achieve inner peace and find your authentic self, WHW Retreats are a gift of self-awareness and personal development that will carry over into your everyday life.WHW Retreats is a mobile, customizable event program of one and three day retreats designed to allow women to sample techniques and activities that aid in healing, the cultivation of inner peace, and the uncovering of one’s authentic self. Each retreat offers a theme-based grouping of sessions ranging from life coaching, to relaxation and self-actualization exercises, to therapeutic movement, art, writing and music, and energy work just to name a few!
|.||Monika’s Good Times Events
MONIKA ROBERTS (2016 ETS Graduate, Service Exhibitor)Monika Robert is the president and founder of Monika’s Good Times Events. Her company focuses on people who love to have fun celebrating life and having a good time. Typical celebrations include the renewal of wedding vows, second marriage ceremonies, a milestone anniversary or birthday, a child’s coming of age, or a the retirement from a first, second or third career. These celebrations are important and fun, but what about the Hawaian Luau, or The 4th of July BBQ, or the once a month Get Down and Boogie Party? Monika decided to create her business when she approached her “golden years,” because she realized that she still loved to have a good time. Monika says, “If I can have a good time, then anyone can have a good time. And I want to create it for them.”
|.||Spirit of the Andes Book Author & Jeweler
EDITH GRACIELA SANABRIA (2005 ETS Graduate, Book Exhibitor)Edith Graciela Sanabria, a native of Bolivia, is an artist, inspiring poet, fashion designer, and photographer. In 2006, Edith published Spirit of the Andes, a bilingual book for children with illustrations. She is an active member of the Poetry Society of Virginia, Poets Anonymous of Fairfax, and several other writing groups. While growing up in Bolivia, she learned from her grandfather, a well respected jeweler, how to create timeless pieces using gold, silver, gems and antique materials. Prior to working in the U.S., she was a fashion entrepreneur in Europe, where she designed and sold fashion garments in France, Switzerland, Spain and Germany. She now engages in the creation of her art and poetry, which have been featured at different festivals and exhibitions, including the Arts Club of Washington, and Torpedo Factory.
LUCRECIA SANTOYO (2016 ETS Graduate, Product Exhibitor)Lucrecia Santoyo creates customized apparel such as T-shirts, polos, hoodies, sweatshirts, and sportswear for individual customers and businesses. She also makes customized accessories such as caps, bags, leather cases, folders, and wall clocks.
DOLER SHAH (2012 ETS Graduate, Interactive Exhibitor: Henna)Doler Shah has been an accomplished artist for the last 40 years. Doler graduated top of her class from Sir JJ School of Arts, since then she has achieved many awards & recognition through different organizations. Doler graduated as a Textile Designer, and a degree in Space Planning & Designing. She has achieved a medal for women’s year exhibition, A first prize in a design competition from Bhabha Somani Sophia Polytechnic College. She has achieved an honorary mention in the Art League. She is fascinated by people and all the different faces she sees, these days she draws different people. In different mediums, paints furniture and when opportunities permits paints landscapes in watercolor. There are times when she tinkers with her jewelry making. All in all she always wants to create.
NISHAT SIDDIQUI (2013 ETS & GMB Graduate, Culinary Exhibitor)An accomplished chef, Nishat views the kitchen as both a culinary and spiritual haven. Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Nishat has nurtured a lifelong passion for the traditional flavors of Indian and Pakistani cooking. Her perspective on adapting healthy meals from a traditionally rich Indian diet came from personal experience after her husband’s heart problems. Her gourmet offerings consist of varied traditional dishes, recreated with wholesome organic ingredients and limited oil.Nishat believes in creating classic Indian dishes by using simple techniques along with a delicious juxtaposition of global flavors. Her cooking lessons eliminate the intimidating factor from Indian cooking and brings it a step closer to a modern lifestyle.
|.||Carmen’s Youth Group
CARMEN VARGAS (2015 ETS & 2016 GMB Graduate, Service Exhibitor)Carmen Vargas knows first-hand the importance of empowerment for women and youth to transform lives and communities. Growing up in Guatemala with her single mother and three older brothers, she often did not have the resources to pay for food, schooling, and other necessities. Thanks to her resilient spirit and her vision of a better life for herself and her children, she traveled to Virginia and started her own cleaning business. Because the community in which they were living was not ideal for raising kids – abuse of drugs and alcohol were common, as was domestic violence – she was determined to make sure that her children grew up in a healthy environment. When her daughter started to get into trouble, she was inspired even more. She identified the needs of the youth in the community by having her daughters invite their friends over to their home. From this one gathering, Carmen’s youth group was born. Carmen’s youth group has had a significant impact on the community. The local teens, including Carmen’s children, have benefited from the life lessons they learned from the small organization. When Carmen was referred to Empowered Women International, she was given the opportunity to expand the youth group even more by turning her group into a full-fledged organization and starting an accompanying women’s group. Carmen calls EWI her family, a support system, a motivator, and an inspiration.