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Women from the County highlight Women of the World

They came from Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America, North America – and Prince Edward County. High level government and private sector representatives, academic and industry experts and more than 500 Business and Professional Women International members explored the “Power To Make a Difference” at the 27th annual International Congress in Helsinki, Finland. The County’s Jeanette Arsenault and Fran Donaldson were there.

Fran Donaldson

Donaldson, who is Past President of BPW Canada, notes the international conference invited Arsenault to sing her “Women of the World” song in English, French, Italian and Spanish during their World Congress meetings. They also asked her to sing “The Sound of Haiti” which was used in their Haiti tribute and fundraiser during the BPW District Conventional last fall in Las Vegas. “At the opening ceremonies in Finlandia Hall, Jeanette sang Women of the World incorporating the four official languages of BPW (Business and Professional Women) International,” said Donaldson. “She also sang it at the close of business sessions every day of the congress, as well as at all the social events. By the last evening, at the farewell party, women from all over the world joined Jeanette on the stage. singing, clapping, hugging, cheering, dancing and chanting, “Come on, you women of the world!”.

In introducing Jeanette, the BPWI President Liz Benham said that Jeanette’s CD, and especially “that song”, had helped her through the many tough moments during her term of office. The triennial congress features five days of advocacy, learning and networking highlighting leadership and cross-culture education with women from 96 countries. During the conference, members add their voice to help transform public and private policies for women into actionable strategies for the workplace, marketplace and community.

“Throughout the congress, Jeanette spoke to women from five continents, and got more than two dozen of them to teach her how to say, ‘Come, on, you women of the world’ in their languages,” said Donaldson. “At the gala banquet, instead of a spoken grace, Jeanette sang her song ‘Women of Spirit’. A hushed crowd of hundreds hung on every word. This new song, introduced at this year’s International Women’s Day in Picton, has themes of gratitude, joy and sharing among women. It and ‘Women of the World’ and others were featured on a special edition CD issued for the 2011 BPWI Congress and will now be heard and sung by women everywhere.”


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