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DES MOINES, Iowa, Jan. 21, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- P.E.O. International, a Philanthropic Educational Organization, today celebrates its 150th Anniversary. Since its founding on January 21, 1869, the organization has been dedicated to empowering women through education and providing support to help them reach their highest aspirations. On Monday, January 21, 2019, hundreds of thousands of P.E.O. members around the world will celebrate the organization’s Founders’ Day and mark this historic occasion.
Over the last 150 years, P.E.O. International has opened doors for more than 105,000 women by providing assistance to pursue their educational goals. Through scholarships, grants, awards and low-interest loans, the organization has given more than $321 million dollars to women across the globe. P.E.O. knows empowering women to earn an education has a lasting impact on their families, communities and the world.
The organization was founded in Mount Pleasant, Iowa in 1869, when seven young women at Iowa Wesleyan University came together with the goals of taking the bonds of friendship beyond their college years and making an impact on womanhood and humanity. Their mission was revolutionary at the time and their first philanthropic project was an educational loan fund created in 1907, when women could not apply for bank loans. Now P.E.O. International has five philanthropic projects and owns Cottey College, a women’s college in Nevada, Missouri voted #1 2019 Best Value Schools and #3 2019 Largest Proportion of International Students in the Midwest Region by U.S. News & World Report.
“Since inception, the purpose of P.E.O. has always been to lift up other women through education, philanthropy, friendship and loving concern,” said Sue Baker, President of International Chapter of P.E.O. “That mission is as relevant today as it was in 1869 and will continue to be for the next 150 years. Beyond the educational opportunities, we provide women with a much-needed sense of belonging, a need that will always endure.”
P.E.O.’s philanthropic projects and the stewardship of Cottey College are all made possible by the generous and committed members of P.E.O. With nearly 6,000 chapters across the United States and Canada, the organization has brought together half a million women in its history, all committed to empowering women through education. For more information about the scholarships, grants, awards and loans, or to learn more about becoming a member, visit peointernational.org.
Jenn McFerron Sloan
About P.E.O. International
P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization) is celebrating 150 years of women helping women reach for the stars. Since its inception in 1869, the nonprofit organization has helped more than 105,000 women pursue educational goals by providing more than $321 million in grants, scholarships, awards and loans and the stewardship of Cottey College. Through membership, the P.E.O. Sisterhood has brought together more than half a million women in the United States and Canada who are passionate about helping women advance through education, while supporting and motivating them. In addition to the educational philanthropies, the P.E.O. Sisterhood provides a framework of support and community for all members.
What started with a bond of friendship among seven women in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, is now one of the oldest women’s organization in North America with close to 6,000 chapters. To learn more about P.E.O., its powerful educational philanthropies and see stories of women who have benefited from the programs, visit peointernational.org