Akili Dada’s fellowship program grows out of our belief that African women, especially those from poor communities, are best positioned to design solutions to the challenges facing those communities. The goal of the program is to build the capacity of some of the continent’s most innovative young women changemakers to drive solutions to some of the biggest challenges facing African society.

The following is a guest post by current Akili Dada Fellow, Ann Nyambura Ndungu:

My name is Ann Nyambura Ndungu from Mathare in Nairobi, Kenya.  I applied for the Akili Dada  fellowship because I was looking for an opportunity to be nurtured into a great leader in society.  Mentorship and experience working with other women are essential, and I’m gaining both of those through my fellowship.

I am passionate about working with young women in slums because there is a possibly that we have shared experiences based on our background.  I know they have great potential, and are simply lacking access to skills and role models.  I am also very interested in environmental conservation, and have included both of these passions in my social change project.


My social change project is focused on empowering women through briquette making, an alternative source of fuel made from urban waste.  In addition to the environmental benefits, we are using briquette making to convene women as an entry point to discussions around sexual reproductive health.

We are looking to address major barriers to leadership for women including early pregnancy and economic instability.   To address these issues, we are leading trainings for young women to help build their capacity and develop new skills to earn an income.
If you would like additional information about the fellows’ social change projects, please contact nyamburaann15@yahoo.com.I will know that my project is successful through continued contact with the young women we work with and consistentevaluation of their personal and professional progress.  To successfully carry out these plans, we need facilitators for the trainings, financial support and in-kind donations.  Additionally, we need capital equipment, such as a briquette machine.  We welcome any and all support, so please feel free to reach out if you’d like to join our efforts in any of the previously mentioned ways.

Learn more about Ann and other Akili Dada Fellows.

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