African Union CIEFFA Alumni Empowered to Champion the Implementation of the #AfricaEducatesHer Campaign


The African Union CIEFFA has convened the 5th Alumni training in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with over 30 AU CIEFFA Alumni from across Africa attending. The 3-day training session was held at the AUC headquarters under the theme, “#AfricaEducatesHer Campaign: Empowering youth to champion gender equality in education” from November 28 – 30, 2023.

Present at the opening ceremony was H.E. Ambassador Stian Christensen from the Permanent Mission of Norway to the African Union. In his welcome remarks, he acknowledged and commended what he says is tremendous and necessary work done by the African Union CIEFFA on girls' education in the continent. “Long-term in the expansion of access to education from pre-primary level and onwards to University/TVET level for ALL African children and youth. […] particularly girls feel safe, learn, and thrive through a conducive and friendly learning environment…This investment will in the long term unlock a vast richness for Africa’s economic development and peace and stability agenda”, he stated. He equally reiterated the support and commitments of Norway in continuously supporting the efforts of AU CIEFFA and key stakeholders including the Alumni.

As Simone Yankey, Acting Coordinator of the African Union International Center for Girls and Women’s Education in Africa officially opened the event on behalf of AUC’s Department of Education, Science, Technology and Education Commissioner, H.E Prof. Mohammed Belhocine, she underscored the vital role that youths play in the advancement of Africa’s growth including the girls and women’s education. She further called on the Alumni to engage in reducing inequalities in and through education in Africa, “it is fair to say that the continent is in dire need of Champions of Education […] I would like to see you all get involved in supporting, energizing, and implementing this campaign at the national level. We have now reached phase II of our campaign, and we will need everyone's help because it's only by working together that we will be able to achieve our goals.”

This initiative by the African Union CIEFFA is in line with its annual work plan in preparation for 2024, the AU year dedicated to education and fostering the implementation of the #AfricaEducatesHer Campaign by encouraging youth-led initiatives at national and grassroots levels. It seeks to brainstorm feasible technical and financing assistance for these initiatives. This would enable their voices and impact on girls and women’s education to be amplified and for the youth to make the 2024 theme of the year their own.

The training is also aimed at equipping Alumni to better intervene in the promotion of quality education for all, presenting findings of a comprehensive study on gender-sensitive environment in higher education institutions; and seeking refinement strategies that will boost the effectiveness and impact of Alumni-led initiatives on the ground.

It is worth noting that the African Union CIEFFA Alumni are former trainees of the Youth Capacity Building Program on gender equality in and through education initiated in 2017. It is a network of over 230 Alumni coming from all AU Member States.

African Union International Centre for Girls and Women’s Education in Africa

The International Centre for the Education of Girls and Women in Africa (AU/CIEFFA) is a specialized institution of the African Union since 2004, dealing with women and girls’ education following Decision Assembly/AU/DEC.44 (III). AU/CIEFFA is a specialized institution of the African Union under the Department of Education, Science, Technology, and Innovation (ESTI). The Centre aims to promote girls and women’s education with a view toward their full participation in the eradication of poverty and the edification of a peaceful world for sustainable human development.

For further information please contact:

Azwe Success Barbara, Communications Officer | African Union International Center for Girls & Women’s Education in Africa | African Union Commission Tel: +226 25 37 61 55 || Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Follow Us: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube| LinkedIn