Door County Wisconsin...
When you mention Door County, Wisconsin to people they picture:
- Cultural and artistic havens
- Fabulous tourist destinations
- Fantastic recreational opportunities
- Over 300 miles of shoreline
- Home to 28,000 permanent and 20,000 seasonal residents.
But, for many of us who live here, we see challenges:
- A county that is over 400 square miles spread out over a narrow long peninsula, resulting in an isolating geography
- An abundance of service jobs leading to seasonal unemployment
- An increase in domestic violence
- An ongoing need for affordable housing and childcare
- An increasing elderly population
- A population where women make up more than 50% of the population but are not proportionately represented as managers, business owners, or in government positions.
While our county provides an idyllic setting for some of us, many in Door County, especially women and girls, are disproportionately impacted by these issues. By addressing these challenges, the Women’s Fund will provide more women and girls the opportunity to become contributing members of our community. The Women’s Fund is solution oriented and provides grants to non-profit organizations who collaboratively seek long range resolution to these challenges.
Door County is a unique environment where women and young girls are challenged by unemployment, low incomes, wage inequality, limited educational opportunities, lack of affordable housing, increased drug and alcohol use, domestic and sexual violence. These issues are real, deep-seated and largely hidden from the population as a whole.
Three overwhelming themes impact Door County women across all age, social and economic levels:
- Financial literacy and self-sufficiency
- Educational goals, mentorship and enriched self-esteemed
- Awareness and utilization of health and safety resources
The 2014 report produced by Alverno College’s Research Center for Women and Girls looks at the challenges facing girls between the ages of 10 and 19. While there has been a reduction in teen sexual activity, teen birth rate and smoking, our girls continue to suffer from stress, depression and suicide, bullying and adverse social media activity. While girls continue to excel in the humanities, they lag behind in the math and science fields.
Why is it important to focus on women and girls to build a strong community? “Women are often cited as our largest untapped labor market for filling the skills gap, accounting for nearly half of the state’s labor force and the majority of college graduates.” (Alverno, 2014)
A few compelling facts:
- Women in Door County working full-time year round earn $.72 on the dollar to what men earn. Women working full time in Door County have median earnings of $32,275 compared to men who have annual median earnings of $44,931.
- 62.9% of women in Door County work in the service industry compared to 37.1% of women in the state of Wisconsin.
Women's Fund of Door County
Door County Community Foundation
P.O. Box 802
Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235