On a trip to Latin America, Ruth DeGolia was awakened to the very real and basic needs of a people confined to an underdeveloped society. She came away from the experience with a plan for invoking systemic, lasting change in Guatemala. Her organization Mercado Global is designed to alleviate poverty from the inside out, breaking the cycle of poverty by invoking opportunity into the lives of local women, who in turn become agents of change in their communities. Mercado Global has grown to include 400 artisans in 30 communities across Guatemala, creating products sold in retail stores across North America. In Spring 2012, the organization launched their Educate to Empower campaign, in celebration of the 2,000+ children who are now able to attend school through their mothers’ income from Mercado Global sales.