Antonio Guterres, who has started his term on New Years Day 2017 , has appointed three women to senior positions at the UN. Guterres , himself a former prime minister of Portugal and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, has committed to "gender parity... from top to bottom in the U.N." and accordingly appointed Amina J. Mohammed to serve as UN deputy chief while Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti who is from Brazil is now Chief de Cabinet. The last appointee hails from the Republic of Korea - Kyung wha Kang - will hold the newly-created position of Special Advisor on Policy. Read More .....


What do a blind Jordanian music teacher, an acid attack victim from Colombia, an octogenarian educator from the US, a palliative nurse from Malawi and a bionic pop artist from Latvia have in common? They all made the list of BBC's 100 Women 2016.

These thought –provoking and courageous women all have stories that we can all learn from, be inspired by and help restore our faith in the good that's in the world.

Launched in 2013 as a series of stories covering a broad range of topics such as education, healthcare, equal pay, domestic violence and sexual abuse, the BBC 100 Women was designed to address the lack of content from and about women. A brain child of BBC editor Fiona Crack and fellow BBC journalist Lilian Lando, the series focuses on the issues and achievements of women in contemporary society. Each year, women who are already famous as well as relatively unknown faces who have made worthwhile contributions to humankind are profiled with viewers participating via Twitter before and after the list is made official.

For more on the 2016 list... BBC 100 Women 2016: Who is on the list? - BBC News 


Thuli Madonsela comes from humble beginnings. Growing up in the improvised Soweto during Apartheid, she started out as an assistant teacher before studying law ;earning her Doctor of Laws degree, LL.D. (Honoris causa) from the University of Stellenbosch.

A member of the team that South Africa's first ever post-election constitution, she became the first ever Public Protector of South Africa in 2009. In this role, she has investigated police chiefs, opposition politicians - and even the president himself; despite continuing pressure against her ranging from character assassination to death threats.

Her message regarding corruption is loud and clear – she says if "visible action is taken" against corrupt officials now, then it sends the message to people that "if you are thinking about it - then don't". Read more on dailymaverick.co.za


Congratulations to Rahel Shawl Zelleke for being the first African woman to be awarded the Loeb Fellowship for the academic year 2016 – ’17.

Joined by other Fellows, Rahel will become a member of the worldwide network of practitioners supporting equity and social justice through the built and natural environment.

Rahel is acknowledged, at an African level, for her astounding contribution to her field, and to Ethiopia. She is recognized to be a role model for many in the country, because of her ethics and innovative work in raising design expectations in several cities in Ethiopia.


Fadumo, 43, has been a refugee having fled the violence in the horn of Africa nation. It was until she was 14 years old that she was able to access education. She holds three master’s degrees in health sciences and public health and is doing a PH.D in women’s governmental participation and empowerment in post-conflict regions.

Dayib was born in Kenya but tensions between Kenya and Somalia lead to the arrest and deportation of her family back to Somalia. Her family sought refuge in Finland where Dayib got the opportunity to get a proper education.

The mother of four left her Children in Finland for Somalia in 2005 to run for Presidency.

“And when I was going to Mogadishu in January, I sat them down and I told them that I’m leaving you, but I’m not sure I might come back. And if I don’t, then you have to know that you are also expected to do this. When the day comes and you have the capability to do so, you must fight for democracy. We must not let evil overcome goodness. And they understand why we need to do this for Somalia because they share the love that I have for Somalia.” Said Dayib to NPR


International humanitarian organization CARE has received a donation of 2.2 million euro today, as a result of the H&M Holiday Campaign. "We are very grateful for this generous donation," comments Dr. Robert Glasser, Secretary General of CARE International. "This donation will allow us to empower women entrepreneurs and workers from low-income urban communities in Ethiopia and help us raise global awareness of the enormous benefits associated with empowering women and girls in the fight against poverty and social injustice." 


Credit: UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Irina Bokova, director-general of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, September 2010.

(WOMENSENEWS)—Along one wall in the visitor's lobby of the United Nations hang the portraits of eight men, including Ban Ki-moon, the current secretary-general, who have presided over the institution since it was founded in 1945.

A new portrait is due to appear on that wall soon and there is a pretty good chance it will bear the visage of a woman.

Three out of the seven officially declared candidates for the next secretary-general are women (more candidates may be nominated over the coming weeks). And while it is not the first time a woman has been in the running for the job, it is the first time that one, let alone three, has a viable chance of getting it.

Here's a closer look at the three female candidates:


Coauthored by Ambassador Melanne Verveer, co-author of Fast Forward and co-founder of Seneca Women

During a recent conference on women’s role in leading change, journalist Christiane Amanpour noted that women bring dignity and resistance to regions and countries in conflict. The challenges we face around the world affect all of us - women and men alike. “If there’s no equality between women and men,” she said, “there is no progress.”

Christiane raises an important point. There is growing recognition that women’s empowerment is vital to our global economy. The United Nations this year announced the first high-level panel focused on improving economic outcomes for women and their leadership in advancing sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The announcement came during the World Economic Forum in Davos, where women leaders made up 18 percent of the participants - more than ever before, but still falls short.


Dr Zebib Yenus winner of 2015 L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Sub-Saharan Africa

L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Sub-Saharan Africa 2015 program honors Africa’s female scientists, and one of the exceptional scientists from across Sub-Saharan Africa was Dr Zebib Yenus. Dr Zebib was awarded this prestigious award on Wednesday, 2 December 2015. This prestigious Award Ceremony took place on the evening of 2 December at The Venue in Melrose Arch, Johannesburg. She is among the three postdoctoral and other doctoral fellows who have been named as winners of the 2015 L’Oréal-UNESCO Regional Fellowships For Women in Science in Sub-Saharan Africa. Other winners include from South Africa, and Nigeria.

Dr Zebib is a young postdoctoral fellow at UNISA via UNESCO-UNISA African chair in Nano-science and Nanotechnology, and iThemba LABS National Research Foundation of South Africa. She also has an international collaboration with Ohio state university – USA, University of Alberta - Canada, Katholic University Leuven-Belgium, University of Bologna- Italy and others. Dr Zebib is the first from Ethiopia to receive this award at a postdoctoral level.  


Ethiopian Prof. Yalemtsehay Mekonnen has won the 2015 African Union Kwame Nkrumah Scientific Awards for her scientific achievement and valuable discoveries and findings that have contributed to the development agenda of the Continent.

Prof. Merzouk Hafida from Algeria also received the award representing the North region. The award ceremony took place on 20 January 2016 during the closing of the 8th African Union Gender Pre-Summit.

The prestigious African Union Kwame Nkrumah Scientific Awards programme was launched on 9 September 2008, with the objective to give out scientific awards to top African scientists particularly the women.

The two female laureates of the AU Kwame Nkrumah Scientific Awards received a cheque of 20,000 USD each, a gold plate medal, a certificate and flowers from the representatives of the AU Commission.


Page 2 of 18

AWiB would like to proudly acknowledge its partners for the year.