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10 Afghans Recognized For Their Role In Women’s Empowerment

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10 Afghans Recognized For Their Role In Women’s Empowerment

Ten champions of women’s empowerment in Afghanistan received awards today from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded Promote: Women in Government (WIG) project.

The ten included five from the public sector and five representing the private sector from among 150 nominations. The awardees work for or with the Government of Afghanistan in Kabul, Herat, Balkh, Kandahar, and Nangarhar to promote gender equality.

Launched in August 2018, the Champion Awards recognize Afghans who distinctly contribute to women’s empowerment and social inclusion, but rarely receive national or international recognition for their efforts.

A committee comprised of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MOWA), the Independent Administrative Reform and Civil Service Commission, the Office of the Chief Executive, USAID partners, and civil society groups selected the winners.

One of the champions for women in the public sector, Whahida Azizi said, “Receiving this award is a big responsibility but this gives me the motivation to step up my efforts in supporting women.”

WIG has also now formally handed over the program to the MOWA to continue the advocacy Champion Awards on an annual basis. MOWA Deputy Minister Spoghmai Wardak said “To shift the mindset, we have to work from the top down. We [at MOWA] are doing our best to secure the position of women, but we must do better in implementation.”

The awardees will receive prizes from Roshan and the Promote: Musharikat project. From executive leadership trainings, to in-kind donations, the Advocacy Champion Awards will give advocates of women’s empowerment the tools that they need to continue working for gender equality across Afghanistan.

Through WIG, USAID is implementing innovative communications and public outreach campaigns for local stakeholders to increase the number of women in the civil service. By amplifying the voices of local advocates for gender equality, the project is bringing real stories of women’s empowerment to life.

Promote is comprised of four activities that are implemented specifically for women. The activities include leadership development, government employment, economic participation, and civil society advocacy. To date, Promote has supported over 50,000 Afghan women in more than 30 provinces nationwide.

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