Have you heard of Women for Women International?
Aline and Deena, the founders of I Am Kooky, met on a school playground. They instantly connected due to their Asian roots and western upbringings, sharing similar anecdotes of their experiences of the fusion of cultures, ideas and traditions.
They came up with the business idea to sell freeze-dried and gently-dried fruits as a way of integrating different fruits from around the world into other countries.
Their fierce unity was supported by their views of women’s rights. In this blog, we explore their affiliation with Women for Women International, and how Aline is running a marathon for charity to support them:
What Inspired the Kooky Team to Support Women for Women International?
Before Aline and Deena set up their business, Aline was invited to an event hosted by Women for Women International. It was a poignant occasion for her, firing up her passion for supporting women’s rights.
She said, “More than 5 years ago, my friend Liz invited me to a #Sheinspiresme lunch, organised by Women for Women International.
“At the lunch, the then-Executive Director and Vice President for Women for Women International shared her stories about the women she had met on previous trips to Afghanistan and other war-torn countries.
“I was profoundly touched and moved with empathy as I heard about the plight of so many women who struggled to cope with post-war fallout.
“I left lunch that day with a strong conviction to support this charity and to contribute to its cause, helping underprivileged women in post-conflict countries rebuild their lives.”
Aline then met Deena and, through their joint experiences, formed a partnership that would not only form the basis of their business but would also become the backdrop of their support for the charity.
Aline went on to say, “Deena and I then founded Kooky, a brand of dried exotic fruit that has been sustainably and ethically sourced from the best farms in Thailand, and curated for their eclectic tastes and unique antioxidant profiles.
“It was only natural then, that we took our support for Women for Women International to the next level, by becoming a corporate sponsor.”
Running a Marathon for Charity
Aline said, “Shortly after I Am Kooky was launched, Women for Women International approached me to ask I’d be interested in joining the #Sheinspiresme Squad to take part in the Royal Parks Half Marathon. A half marathon is 13.1 miles - or 21.1km - a daunting feat!
“I accepted the challenge and, despite my lack of athleticism, am excited to have been given the opportunity to run on behalf of such an amazing charity.”
Running a marathon for charity is a new challenge for Aline, but she is determined to complete the race in support of the women who’re rebuilding their lives.
She continued, “According to the Metro, 1st-time female runners tend to take around 2.5-3 hours to finish this race, which is the goal I have set for myself.”
We’re sure that Aline’s hard work in preparation for running a marathon for charity will pay off, and she’ll do the business and the charity proud. If you’d like to follow her progress or sponsor her marathon (with the proceeds going to the Women for Women International cause), you can do so here.
Alternatively, visit Women for Women International to find out more about the charity itself and its incredible endeavours to help women in war-torn countries.
You can also read our previous blog to find out about our passion for diversity and empowerment.