Our REACTwomen's Director is Allison Agoglia
Allison's upbringing as a military brat allowed her to experience living all over the United States and abroad, instilling in her a sense of adaptability and a fascination with different cultures. Her passion for working with diverse populations and overseas development was ignited by her travels and exposure to various communities. Throughout her career, Allison has worked with several NGOs globally, focusing on providing assistance to women and children, access to education, and women's health. She has also worked in a refugee resettlement office, where she helped with women's and cultural orientation programs. Allison firmly believes in the boots-on-the-ground approach, establishing personal connections with families and communities, and learning their unique stories. She approaches her work with empathy, compassion, and grit, providing support and empowerment to those she serves. Allison earned her degree in International Affairs, with a Concentration in Africa, and a minor in French, from James Madison University. Her academic background, combined with her practical experience, has prepared her to make a meaningful impact in the lives of individuals and communities globally.
In September 2022, REACT DC launched its REACTwomen program, in collaboration with partner organizations, to address the pressing need for comprehensive gender-specific programs for Afghan women who lack English proficiency, support, mentorship, and education. As the Director of REACTwomen, our goal is to provide a collaborative effort for refugee women to gain self-sufficiency, employment, and entrepreneurship opportunities. Our core focus areas are health & wellness, education, cultural orientation, and entrepreneurship, and we offer a 12-month schedule of social gatherings, workshops, support groups, yoga classes, ESL lessons, cultural orientation classes, microenterprise opportunities, seminars for leadership and confidence building, and more. Our mission is to empower refugee women, promote economic empowerment, and ensure they understand their rights and can exercise their agency.
Personal & Professional Development
Support the development of the prerequisite skills necessary for self-sufficiency.
Our program focuses on personal and professional development by providing various resources to help individuals achieve self-sufficiency. We offer trauma-informed yoga to teach life/work balance for better wellbeing, support groups to foster emotional and mental health growth, and social activities to promote self-confidence and community engagement. We partner with the Alexandria Health Department to provide a variety of programs that help women re-enter the workforce while ensuring their children's and families' needs are met. Additionally, we organize panels of professional Afghan women to share their experiences about creating work/life balance in the US, and panels of Afghan women and men to talk about their resettlement experiences and how employment helped them.
Education & Capacity Building Programs
Educate the women through capacity building programs so they are prepared to enter the workforce
Our program focuses on capacity building and offers a wide range of resources to help individuals acquire the skills necessary for self-sufficiency. Our capacity building programs include ELL lessons, digital literacy, financial literacy, housing and safety, transportation and navigation, leadership, gender dynamics, US laws and legal system, cultural adjustment, interview skills, public speaking, and more. All of these programs are taught by native Dari/Pashto speakers. Each program is divided into three categories: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced, which are matched with language proficiency. The tiers will overlap, except for ESL, and will have an initial intake survey, one-month check-ins, and a test/review of the course before leveling up. This tiered approach ensures that individuals can progress at their own pace and that they receive the appropriate level of support and instruction to acquire the skills they need to become self-sufficient.
Employment & Entrepreneurship
Build the women's capability for self-employment and entrepreneurship.
Our program focuses on providing various resources to help individuals develop and improve their artisan skills. We offer workshops that provide outreach to local artisan businesses and VoTech certification to further develop their skills. Additionally, we organize seminars from women-owned local businesses to provide further learning opportunities. Our program also offers access to all capacity building courses, REACTworks database, micro-enterprise assistance, and small business training courses. We partner with a network of organizations to provide comprehensive support and resources to help individuals start and grow their businesses. Furthermore, we offer a partnership program that provides career mentorship and access to training courses. This program is designed to help individuals achieve their full potential and become self-sufficient. We believe that by providing these resources and support, individuals can build a successful career and achieve financial independence.
International Women's Day
We are proud to present our video series, which is part of the 2023 International Women's Day celebrations and aligns with this year's theme of #EmbraceEquity. Our goal is to promote equity for women and inspire individuals to take action towards creating a more equitable world.
Created in partnership with partner organizations and individuals from REACT DC's Northern Virginia Asylum Clinic Team, our video series covers a range of women's topics, including the gender pay gap, women in leadership positions, gender-based violence and harassment, mental health, and reproductive rights and healthcare. The videos aim to educate viewers on the difference between equity and equality and encourage them to embrace equity by taking simple actions to support women's rights and opportunities.
Equity is about ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to achieve their full potential, regardless of their background or circumstances. By promoting equity for women, we can create a world where everyone has the opportunity to thrive. We hope that our video series will inspire you to join us in our mission towards a more equitable world.
IWD Women's Topics
We are committed to promoting equity for women every day of the year. As part of this commitment, we have created a video compilation that explores important women's topics. Our team and partners, including the Board of Directors, Directors, Staff, REACTlegal Application Specialists, and partners from Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, Peace Lutheran - Alexandria, Afghan American Women’s Association, and Aseel, share their thoughts on what topics are important when it comes to celebrating and advocating for women's rights and opportunities. We believe that gender equality and women's empowerment are essential for creating a just and prosperous society. Our goal is to educate and inspire individuals to embrace equity by taking action to support women's rights and opportunities every day.
REACT DC x Aseel
Buy Good Do Good
We at REACT DC are thrilled to announce our partnership with Aseel, aimed at bridging the gap between 30 refugee artisan women in the DMV area and the global digital economy through Aseel App. By working together, we can provide these talented women with the tools they need to thrive and make a positive impact in their communities. Join us in empowering these resilient women and celebrating their incredible skills. #AseelApp #BuyGoodDoGood