The Ecobank Foundation and UN Women’s Regional Office for West and Central Africa have signed a partnership agreement to strengthen their respective agendas for promoting women’s empowerment in Africa. For the first time, these two key actors in the development of the continent have established a framework for cooperation to achieve their common goals and accelerate the empowerment of women in Africa.
“Women have always had a central role in the Foundation’s activities and initiatives. Through our partnerships, we have been able to promote, among other things, women’s leadership and girls’ education. With UN Women, we want to go further. We are thrilled to have such a partner, which expertise and experience will help us ensure that a gender equality lens is applied in all our actions,” explains Elisa Desbordes-Cissé, COO of the Ecobank Foundation.
Financial inclusion, focusing on women
For the past nine years, the Ecobank Foundation has been organising the “Ecobank Day”, a unique opportunity for Ecobank Group employees each year to serve the well-being of their communities.
This year’s Ecobank Day, scheduled for 12 November, will focus on financial literacy and inclusion as a key factor in reducing poverty and promoting shared prosperity for women and youth, mostly in marginalized communities, with the theme “Leave no one behind: Financial Inclusion for all!”.
Through this partnership with UN Women, particular attention will be paid to the specific needs and challenges faced by women and women entrepreneurs in both rural and urban areas.
16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence
The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign is an annual international event that begins on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, and continues until 10 December, Human Rights Day.
For the first time, the Ecobank Foundation and UN Women will jointly carry out a series of awareness raising, advocacy and action activities to combat violence against women and girls in several African countries.
Sport as a vehicle for women’s personal and professional empowerment
Through this partnership, the Ecobank Foundation and UN Women will put a specific focus on the sports sector and the opportunities that exist for women along the value chain, both in terms of personal and professional empowerment.
Regional Director a.i., Deputy Regional Director, UN Women West and Central Africa Regional Office, Florence Raes, said, “We are excited about this partnership with Ecobank in many ways. Through this collaboration, we will be able to work together to promote gender equality in Africa and empower many more women by increasing their levels of financial literacy and inclusion. And given our shared interest in sports, we will together more effectively combat gender stereotypes by promoting more equal participation of women and girls in the sports industry in Africa.”