The Difference Women’s Leadership Can Make: The African Medical Research Foundation
By Linda Basch
Now a week after the AMREF luncheon, I want to share why I’m still feeling so inspired.
At the luncheon we learned about AMREF’S impressive work in improving health care in East Africa -- through building the capacity of local people on the ground. We heard about training programs for health workers – delivered in the field often through innovative technology, about data management systems for HIV/AIDS patients, and targeted maternal and child health programs. Those programs say sustainability to me. Having worked in East Africa myself, I know how under-resourced the areas in which AMREF works are. And I also remember an earlier version of AMREF, when its focus was primarily on flying severely injured individuals from the bush to often life saving surgery. That was a time when it was led primarily by men. The leadership I saw at the luncheon included many women – from the Director General, Dr. Teguest Guerma, to Carol Jenkins and Lisa Meadowcroft, USA Board Chair and Executive Director, to the majority of guests and the luncheon leadership. I haven’t followed AMREF closely enough to know when it expanded its mission from rescue to building sustainability, or when it brought so many women into its leadership ranks – but hats off to AMREF on both counts. And hats off to the incredibly inspiring women it honored – Eve Ensler, Abby Disney, and Charlayne Hunter-Gault – all making a big difference in Africa. AMREF is certainly an organization I want to get to know better.
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What We Do
NCRW is a network of leading university and community based research, policy, and advocacy centers with a growing global reach dedicated to advancing rights and opportunities for women and girls. We also have a Corporate Circle comprised of senior diversity professionals from leading U.S. and global member companies and a Presidents Circle of college and university leaders who share our commitment. NCRW harnesses the collective power of its network to provide knowledge, analysis, and thought leadership on issues ranging from reducing women’s poverty to building a critical mass of women’s leadership across sectors.