By Justin Udo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — On Tuesday night, five women making positive contributions throughout the Delaware valley were honored at KYW Newsradio‘s Annual Women’s Achievement Awards.
Patricia DeCarlo, the executive director of the Norris Square Community Alliance in North Philadelphia, was one of the honorees who was recognized during Tuesday night’s 6th annual award ceremony.
“The mission of the organization has been empowerment of poor people, poor neighborhoods, to make their voice be heard and make change,” she says, “but you have to be part of that change.”
DeCarlo says bettering neighborhoods is what drives her organization.
“We built affordable housing for low-income families, went and researched and got a head start program, we do after school programs,” she says.
30 years ago, DeCarlo and four other volunteers joined Norris Square Community Alliance. The organization now has more than 200 members on staff.
Wendy Crawford was paralyzed in a car crash when she was 19. Since then, the honoree has made it her mission to be a voice for others like her. She’s doing that through a website she created, geared towards women in wheelchairs.
“To see other women feel empowered by that and feel good about themselves, that makes me feel good,” Crawford says.
Crawford also co-chairs a photography exhibit that highlights women in wheelchairs.
“I feel like representing women with disabilities and I feel like we haven’t been included in a lot of things, so it’s an honor for me to represent them and to be part of such an amazing group of women,” she says.
Other honorees for the 6th annual Women’s Achievement Awards were Sr. Rose Martin, Executive Director of Hope Partnership for Education, Dr. Marciene Mattleman, Mayor’s Commission on Literacy, Philadelphia Futures, and KYW Newsradio Education Reporter, and Geri Swift, President of the Women’s Business Enterprise Council.