This year marks the 5th anniversary of the DVF Awards. The DVF Awards were created in 2010 by Diane von Furstenberg and the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation to honor and support extraordinary women who have had the courage to fight, the power to survive and the leadership to inspire. Women who have transformed the lives of others through their commitment, resources and visibility.Winner Veronika Scott is the founder and CEO of The Empowerment Plan.Born to parents that struggled with unemployment, mental health issues, and addiction made her carry these burdens with her for years, it wasn’t until college that Veronika was able to use her experiences to her advantage. To start, she built an organization around a single idea: to design a self-heated, weather-resistant coat that transforms into a sleeping bag for the homeless. That idea evolved into a system of empowerment in which homeless mothers are paid to learn how to produce the coat, giving them an opportunity to earn money, find a place to live, and gain back their independence. The mission of The Empowerment Plan is to prove that homeless parents have worth and are fully capable of learning and adapting to create a better future for themselves and their families. Veronika is the youngest recipient of the John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award from the JFK Library Foundation and Harvard University. She has also received an IDEA Gold Award from the Industrial Design Society of America. The Empowerment Plan story has been told across the world and shared at events such as the World Summit on Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Forbes 400 Philanthropy Summit.
“Growing up with addicts for parents, everyone treated me as if I was just an extension of them. I spent my childhood trying to prove to people that I had value and that I was worth investing in. Every woman we hire at The Empowerment Plan has experienced so much in her life and yearns for the chance to be given a clean slate and to have someone see them for the amazing, talented, and valuable person that they are.”