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Women's Initiative for Self Empowerment (WISE)

WISE was founded in 1995 by multi-cultural immigrant and refugee women who saw the importance of education and leadership as essential drivers of self-empowerment and self-actualization. Today, WISE continues to provide culturally-responsive education and advocacy to immigrant and refugee women, girls and those on the feminine gender spectrum through our partnerships with local school and community sites in Saint Paul, MN.

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WISE provides academic support and college preparation for girls in middle school through college.

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WISE offers a series of life, leadership and job skills training for women and girls of all ages.

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WISE gives women and girls the tools to become self-empowered and self-sufficient individuals.

What We Do


Provide Academic Support

The Girls Getting Ahead in Leadership (GGAL) program operates both during school hours and after school for immigrant and refugee female-identified youth in grades 6-12. The program offers academic support, while also introducing life skills training and college preparation.


Facilitate Post-Secondary Success

The WeLEAD program supports GGAL alums and other immigrant and refugee female-identified students to help them thrive in college and other post-secondary programs. We offer career planning, scholarships and academic support to ensure the success of each student.

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Foster Healthy Relationships

The Healthy Relationships program works with GGAL to educate girls and their families about what a healthy, safe relationship looks like. We work to raise awareness about gender-based violence and offer prevention-based strategies for youth and community members.

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Strengthen Family Relationships

The Parent Encouragement program develops workshops and multilingual resources to help immigrant and refugee parents navigate school systems and support their children's developmental success.

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