Poverty Fighter Moves On
After five years of fighting poverty in Fairfax County, FACETS executive director Amanda Andere is moving on. She will now serve as president and CEO of Wider Opportunities for Women. The national DC-based organization works on research, advocacy, and policy for the economic security of women, children, and elders. Amanda says she wanted to affect policy and change to bring a larger number of people out of poverty. Much of the 50-year-old organization’s research goes toward policy on issues like living wages, jobs that provide economic opportunities for women and families, and helping elders as they age out of the workforce.
Amanda, who grew up in Herndon, Va., says her tenure at FACETS started with trying to revive a financially ailing organization. She turned it around by increasing its financial reserves and added three to four new programs. FACETS revamped how the organization tackles homelessness and poverty by working with people longer and getting them stable. Amanda says she was inspired to pursue this type of career by her parents, who immigrated from Jamaica and Kenya after the Civil Rights movement. While they felt discrimination in different ways, they were also embraced by total strangers. They often reminded her that their success didn’t just come from themselves and they always asked her what she was doing to give back.