wplg logo

South Florida Hooters donates more than $30K to women business owners overseas

Miss Hooters International Gianna Tulio
Miss Hooters International Gianna Tulio (Photo courtesy of South Florida Hooters)

South Florida Hooters teamed up with Self-Help International, an organization dedicated to alleviating hunger by helping people become self-reliant, to raise funds for impoverished female entrepreneurs living in rural communities.

In August, seven female Hooters employees embarked on an online fundraising effort with a promise that South Florida Hooters would match all monies raised up to $10,000, as part of its Give a Hoot campaign. The female employees collectively raised more than $10,000 and donated a total of $30,609.

“South Florida Hooters has supported Self Help International for more than 10 years,” said Kristi Quarles, director of marketing and public affairs for Hooters. “The support began because the late Dave ‘Lags’ Lageschulte, founder of South Florida Hooters, was a strong supporter and from the same small town, Waverly, Iowa, where Self Help International was founded.”

The seven local Hooters employees who participated in the online fundraising campaign are 2021 Miss Hooters Gianna Tulio (Boca Raton), Danielle Magda (Sarasota), Sloan Miavitz (Sarasota), Madison Novo (Weston), Lisamarie Johnson (Weston), Alyssa Duckett (Fort Myers) and Briana Smith (2019 Miss Hooters International).

Women in developing countries, such as Nicaragua and Ghana, are often ineligible to receive loans through formal banks and sometimes end up taking loans with predatory lenders. By having access to capital through Self-Help International, women are able to start and invest in their own businesses.

According to Self-Help International, women reinvest 90% of their income into the family, compared to 30% to 40% by men. This means women spend more on their children for food, shelter and education, which creates long-term social and economic gains for their communities.

For more information on Self-Help International visit selfhelpinternational.org.

About the Author:

Mayte Padron Cordones is an Emmy-award winning journalist and the director of WPLG's Community Relations Department, overseeing the station's outreach initiatives to benefit and strengthen the South Florida community.