A growing place for girls in development conversation

By Kelli Rogers 20 June 2016

Devex Associate editor Kelli Rogers sat down with Theo Sowa, chief executive officer of the African Women’s Development Fund, at Women Deliver 2016.

The development community is talking about women and girls, but they’re not always acting in ways that place women and girls centrally in that conversation, according to Theo Sowa, chief executive officer of the African Women’s Development Fund.

Sowa pointed to initiatives such as The Girl Generation, an effort to end female genital mutilation, as an example of a group ensuring that girls are central to decision making. AWDF itself is a grantmaking foundation that supports local, national and regional women’s organizations working toward the empowerment of African women — and Sowa noted that she sees more opportunity than ever for locally led initiatives.

“It’s hard for people to give up that power,” Sowa said in reference to international organization allowing national groups to lead.

Watch the video to find out which quote from another speaker at Women Deliver 2016 most resonated with her.

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About the author

Kelli Rogers@kellierin

In her role as associate editor, Kelli Rogers helps to shape Devex content around leadership, professional growth and careers for professionals in international development, humanitarian aid and global health. As the manager of Doing Good, one of Devex's highest-circulation publications, she is constantly on the lookout for the latest staffing changes, hiring trends and tricks for recruiting skilled local and international staff for aid projects that make a difference. Kelli has studied or worked in Spain, Costa Rica and Kenya.

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