In celebration of International Women’s day, March 8, LWR is highlighting women whose leadership is helping LWR fight poverty and support men and women farmers. We are grateful to have them be a part of the worldwide LWR family and partners. #BeBoldForChange
“My work is my fuel, my faith in action – because of my work, someone has better access to food and water, as well as more opportunities to improve their life.”
Nana Aminata Toure Sidibe is LWR’s Regional Representative for West Africa, based at Burkina Faso. We celebrate her for championing work that helps women and men lift their families out of poverty. She has worked with LWR since 2002 – that’s over 14 years! Nana helped open LWR’s offices in Mali. Her first experience with development work was during high school when she took part in an evaluation project about the benefits of women participating in the fish market. Since then, she has been championing ways for women to produce more income to help support their households, increase access to credit and other financial tools, and build up local organizations. She is also on the Board of a non-governmental organization in Mali where she worked early in her career.
On women’s empowerment: “At the beginning of any activity with women, men always come to the meeting – as ‘an ambassador of men to women’ – to control what women are saying or doing. The control of men gradually fades until it disappears with the progression of LWR’s projects. Men witness that strengthening women’s decision-making and confidence also improves their income and living conditions, as well as for the household and the community. It’s a long process but I have seen women become leaders in their communities so I know it’s possible.” During a LWR workshop, Nana met with a female President of Nazari, a union of community-based organizations in Niger and was delighted to hear that she had the economic and social support to travel from town to town and city to city for business.
On celebrating International Women’s Day: Nana will be celebrating by purchasing a new Burkina Faso cloth to display at work!