Power with Purpose

Five women who are really changing the world. Through their action, they are tackling some of the world’s most pressing problems. Through their attitudes and words, they are illuminating the path for others.

Devex, the media platform for the global development community, has announced yesterday the names of the five women leading their 2016 Power with Purpose list, a leadership recognition for the most influential women.

I would like to present them here, each of them through some of their inspiring words :

Purpose is to have a guiding star, a very clear North, that brings together everything that you do in life. Never work unless you’re passionate about it, do not compromise your passion.

Christiana Figueres, a Costa Rican diplomat, is the woman behind the Paris Climate Conference agreement.


Embracing the gentleness that comes with being a woman is actually even more powerful.

Eleni Gabre-Madhin, an Ethiopian economist, created the Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX), a tool that allows Ethiopian farmers to be linked to the global economy and get a fair price for their crops.


Brace for change, and when change comes, grab it ! It is an opportunity, even if it is a little scary. Go with it !

Kristalina Georgieva is a Bulgarian economist who is now European Commissioner for Budget and Human Resources, who has dedicated her life to tackle humanitarian crisis trough the world.


You need to have focus to to whatever it is you want to do, and to have clarity.

Fayeeza Naqvi is a Pakistani philanthropist, co-founder of the Aman Foundation, who launched the AmanAmbulance Service in Karachi, to ensure timely and high quality ambulance services in a city where fifteen percent of severely injured children used to die en route to medical facilities.


Keep trying to make a difference ! Whatever happens to you, you know you went down fighting !

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is Nigerian economist who fought corruption and poverty as Nigeria’s finance minister, and now fights for the 19 millions children still in need of vaccines.



Devex is the media platform for the global development community. A social enterprise that connects and informs 600,000+ development, health, humanitarian, and sustainability professionals through news, business intelligence, and funding & career opportunities.


“We don’t generate pity, we generate employment!”

“We don’t generate pity, we generate employment!”

In 2010 I created the whole content of a campaign called “Harmony Peoples” for the Red Cross, on economic alternatives of indigenous people in Ecuador and Bolivia. At that time I met in Ecuador Rosa Guaman, an extraordinary woman, community leader and director of Jambi Kiwa, a company that produces, processes and exports medicinal plants worldwide. I was dazzled by Rosa’s words, that expressed the spirit a successful development project must have, but I also felt impressed by her capacity to analyze the effects of consumerism, on our environment of course, but also on our minds.

I have now added English subtitles to the video of Rosa’s interview, so if you are a development professional, or simply a person who has doubts about our own development model’s sustainability, don’t lose a word of Rosa’s interview, she is inspiring! (5 min. video – clic on “captions” icon under the image to activate subtitles).

The business success of a group of women

“We don’t generate pity, we generate employment!”. Rosa Guamán, managing director, Jambi Kiwa.
“We don’t generate pity, we generate employment!”. Rosa Guamán, managing director, Jambi Kiwa.

Jambi Kiwa was born as a cooperative founded by women led by Rosa Guaman, in order to grow, process and sell medicinal and aromatic plants. It brings together more than 600 families in the Chimborazo region that benefit from better economic income from the sale of products in the domestic and international market through fair trade networks. In 2003, Jambi Kiwa won the “Successful women-led ventures Latin American Award” (REPEM, Uruguay).

What has made these women so successful? The use of specific indigenous knowledge, traditional forms of community activity, a strong spirit of resistance and an extraordinary vision.

An economic, social, cultural, health and ecological project.

In the indigenous approach of development, economic benefits are not considered “development” if they imply imbalances in other areas of life and society or in the environment. So the aims of Jambi Kiwa are not only income generation for the families, but also:

Jambi Kiwa's processing factory in Riobamba. The entire process of plant's growing and transformation is natural. The products are made on the basis of Andean medicine recipes.
Jambi Kiwa’s processing factory in Riobamba. The entire process of plant’s growing and transformation is natural. The products are made on the basis of Andean medicine recipes.
– Recovering and reasserting the worth of the ancestral knowledge of plant growing: organic and quality production of endemic crop only.
– Recover and reassert the worth of the Andean Medicine : Jambi Kiwa is also al school of Andean Medicine.
– Educate and alphabetize and train partners coming from rural areas.
– Respect gender equality and children.
– Preserve the environment by eradicating deforestation and clearing by fire.
– Encourage efforts, mutual aid and equitable involvement of its partners in development efforts.

Un ejemplo de turismo comunitario: la comunidad de Livichuco, Bolivia

Un ejemplo de turismo comunitario: la comunidad de Livichuco, Bolivia
Para ver donde queda la comunidad de Livichuco, clica en la imagen // Foto : Google Maps

La comunidad de Livichuco se encuentra en el Altiplano boliviano, cerca de Challapata, en la provincia de Oruro. Es un pequeño caserío que se encuentra en lo que antiguamente era camino colonial entre Oruro, Potosí y Sucre. En aquella época, Livichuco era un “Tambo”, es decir un lugar donde paraban los viajeros a restaurarse y descansar. Livichuco parece un pueblo suspendido en el tiempo, en el medio del desierto…

Los habitantes de Livichuco son de origen Aymara y de cultura Qaqachaqa. Viven del cultivo de la papa, así como de la pequeña ganadería de llama y oveja. Las difíciles condiciones de vida de la región han llevado muchas familias a emigrar a las ciudades.

Tibursio Maraza, campesino y guía de turismo // Livichuco · Bolivia · Foto Alejo Cock

Durante el invierno, como en todo el Altiplano, las temperaturas bajan frecuentemente a 20 grados bajo cero. En algunas temporadas se pierden los cultivos, así como el forraje para los animales.

Por esta razón la comunidad ha encontrado en el turismo una fuente anexa de ingresos. Los visitantes que se quedan unos días en el caserío para compartir la vida de la comunidad, pueden también descubrir todo el proceso de fabricación de los tejidos andinos, pasear por el antiguo camino Inca o hacia la cumbre del Toro, lugar de nidación de los cóndores.

Livichuco es parte de la Red Boliviana de Turismo Comunitario, TUSOCO, una asociación que reúne a varias comunidades campesinas e indígenas en todo el país.

El alojamiento y la comida en la comunidad, los espectáculos de música y danza, la venta de artesanías y el servicio de guía naturalista, son nuevas fuentes de ingreso para la comunidad de Livichuco.

TUSOCO, Red Boliviana de turismo Comunitario.
IOSPHERA para CREU ROJA A CATALUNYA, Campaña “Pobles Harmonia”, entrevista con Tibursio Maraza, campesino y guía de turismo, Livichuco, Bolivia, octubre 2009