La Ruche, the network that brings together all professional french speaking women in Shanghai, takes action for 99women.

Sandra Edouard Baraud and Marguerite Deperrois, two dynamic French women who share a communicative and generous energy, that they dedicate to an ambitious associative project, La Ruche (meaning The Hive).

Arrived at Shanghai in 2012, Sandra wanted to gather together women’s energies. With three other co-founders, Hélène, Florence and Annie, she wanted to allow francophone women living in Shanghai to exchange views about professional topics, in a friendly environment and whatever their professional situation is. Entrepreneur, company manager, in a professional break, salaried or in a career change; the starting idea is that the diversity of profiles brings wealth and creativity.
Marguerite joined the adventure in September 2014. Entrepreneur and having been mentored herself in France, she volunteered as a mentor and one thing leading to another she proposed to be in charged of the mentoring program of La Ruche. She joins the board of La Ruche and discovered all the work to be done to make this association live and shine.

La Ruche, with its large network of women with many different talents, had something to do to help 99 women to become a written play played on scene!

Sandra, Marguerite, how did you hear about 99 women?

Sandra : During La Ruche’s Christmas party, I had a chat with Genevieve and explained that we were looking for our new collaborative project. Indeed, once a year, La Ruche intends to set up or to take part of a collaborative project in order to strengthen the links between the members.
Genevieve was the one who told me that we may have found our new collaborative project and she told me about her new wonderful theatre play whose main theme was about women…

What convinced you that La Ruche should be part of it ?

Sandra : It was obvious. La Ruche and Genevieve had to work together! With her theatre play Genevieve wanted to show the women diversity. Between La Ruche and Geneviève’s theatre play, there Sandrawere values in common: feminism, diversity oriented and passion for collaborative work.
Furthermore, It was the good moment for La Ruche to be involved in an artistic project. It’s the first time and it seems that the members of La Ruche are very found of that. 50 members of La Ruche are involved in the project: 7 of them are coordinators. They direct the actresses and help Genevieve in the stage direction. Others are involved in the communication plan, sponsors and funds research; some of them are actresses in the theatre play…
Finally, this kind of project needs a mix of skills in order to succeed and it’s a good opportunity for the members of La Ruche working together, playing together, using their talents. Furthermore, the benefits of the play will be refund to a non-profit organization dedicated to Chinese women. That’s an important point for La Ruche to give back to China what it gives to us.

How do you see the women in Shanghai?

Marguerite: Very active, very opened, very confident. Living in Shanghai widens your point of view. They realize how different the world can be. The French women that come to La Ruche are happy to share their professional experience, but not only. They share what they are living through, their interrogations, their surprises, their difficulties, what they like in Shanghai. They help each other. They also just share happy moment, just chatting in French!

What kind of woman are you? 

Sandra: I like to feel usefull to people. Helping them finding their ways, achieving their goals. I also like to create new projects, see them growing up,…Marguerite 1
Marguerite: I enjoy making things happen, working in group. I like the creativity emerging among a group doing something. I enjoy helping people, making connections, seeing them achieving their goals. All together with fun and harmony.
With 99 women, I see many women discovering what it is to have a role in a play, they feel the impact on their body and mind, they are happy to do it with their group. With 99 women, I see many women happy to use their professionnal experience for a social project, raising funds, communicating about the play, organizing the event. That is a wonderful collaborative project, exactly what we like at La Ruche.

La Ruche actuality:

Since its creation in 2013, La Ruche has organized 14 monthly networking events with each time a woman testimony, 11 training workshops on various subjects, 2 Mentoring programs and 2 exciting collaborative projects.

More information (french only):