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The AWARD career development fellowship expands into Francophone Africa

The African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD) has announced its expansion into Francophone Africa. At a Women in Agriculture reception dinner held on September 5, 2017, during the 2017 African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF), Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg, AWARD’s Director, launched the call for applications for top women scientists from Francophone Africa.

The high-level dinner was well attended by various Head of States and Ministers including: HE the former President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete; HE the Vice President of Côte d’Ivoire, Daniel Kablan Duncan; HE the former President of Ghana, John Kufour; the Minister for Agriculture of Côte d’Ivoire, Amadou Coulibaly; among other dignitaries.

Speaking at the reception dinner, Dr. Kamau-Rutenberg noted that one of the biggest challenges AWARD has faced is a deep desire to be truly pan-African by investing in women scientists from Francophone Africa. She further noted that the situation is changing thanks to the generous support from partners led by the Agropolis Fondation, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

“Tonight, I am excited to announce the launch of a three-year initiative that will support the development of women’s leadership in agricultural research across francophone Africa,” said Dr. Kamau-Rutenberg.

The AWARD Fellowship, a two-year career development program, invests in the continent’s leading women agricultural scientists to ensure a growing cohort of capable, confident, and influential African women scientists available to lead critical gender-responsive advances and innovations in the agricultural sector.

AWARD describes gender-responsive research as research that addresses the distinctive needs and priorities of both men and women across the agricultural value chain.  This new round of fellowship is part of AWARD’s larger strategic focus on increasing the gender responsiveness of agricultural research across the continent.

“At AWARD, we believe that agriculture has the potential to lift Africa out of poverty but we must be intentional in ensuring that economic growth is inclusive. We must build agriculture driven economic growth that lifts ALL Africans out of poverty and that means we cannot afford to leave women behind,” emphasized Dr. Kamau-Rutenberg.

African women scientists who are citizens of one of the eligible countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, or Togo) and have completed a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree in an agricultural discipline, are encouraged to apply for this prestigious two-year career development program.

For more information, see the announcement on our website.