Jenny is a true good samaritan! She left Hollywood and filmmaking to set her attention on a bigger cause — adoption in China.
Jenny Bowen, now 66, was 50 years old when she decided to adopt a little girl in 1997. She was working as a filmmaker with her husband, Dick Bowen, but all of that changed when they found their new passion and careers — adoption in China. After winning the prestigious Purpose Prize award in 2011, it’s no surprise Jenny is nominated again in 2012.
It was a New York Times article that opened their eyes to the horrible conditions for young girls in China. They were being discriminated against based solely on their gender. The Bowen’s decided they were going to adopt a beautiful little 2-year-old girl who was sick. After only a year with them, she was happy and restored to health.
Now, Jenny is the founder of the Half the Sky foundation. The name of the foundation comes from a Chinese saying, “Woman hold up half the sky.” By 2000, the first installment of her foundation was up and running, and that same year Jenny adopted a second chinese daughter.
Her mission was to “figure out how to let the Chinese government let us come over there and help children.” Jenny said on The Today Show on Feb. 14, “We bring love to children who don’t have families,” Jenny said. She also discussed the progress speed of the girls: “Within six months, children were being children.”
Well, it looks like her mission was completed because in 2011 the Chinese government announced its commitment to make Half the Sky’s programs available to every orphaned child in China. Jenny is in charge of over 2,000 children care workers and has 51 centers with one located in each provence in China.
With all of her hard work, it’s no wonder Jenny is up for the 2012 Purpose Award! We bet she will take it home again!
-Jeannie Van Allen
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