Posted by Eloise Willemsen on April 26, 2018
Veronica, pictured on the right, is Creative Action Institute's Africa Regional Coordinator. Her experience working with adolescent girls and young women in
East Africa has made her the perfect leader to design and execute our East African Girls' Leadership Summit and Mentor Program. Previously she worked as a program director with Akili Dada, an internationally recognized leadership incubator. In this role, Veronica participated in our mentor program. Veronica believes in creating spaces for girls and young women to develop, grow, and become leaders who use their leadership to positively change communities.
Veronica believes in the importance of not only supporting girls in Kenya but also ensuring the support is seen as a partnership. "Learning alongside each other is critical. There is no expert here. We are all peers discovering for change." That said, Veronica interviewed Magdalena, a friend and colleague. Magdalena works at AfricAid in Tanzania and is one of the mentors that Veronica supports throughout the year through the East African Girls’ Leadership Summit and Mentor Program.
What has the impact been, on you, of participating in the East African Girls’ Leadership Summit and Mentor Program?
With the knowledge and skills that I received from the training, I feel empowered both personally and economically. This work has brought great
energy to my career and life. Moreover, it has empowered me with different tools I would not have otherwise had in my life. I now have great self-advocacy skills and dialogue skills. These skills enable me to ignite change in my community and life.
How do you see your role in your community?
I have learned that I can stretch and grow to do great things on my community. I have learned that I am the light and hope towards the future generation.
What is your greatest hope for the world?
My greatest hope for the world is to know that all girls have the right to an education, the right to be heard, the right to live free from exploitation and the right to be happy. I believe by mentoring and supporting the next generation, I will develop and transform the world for all girls!
What advice would you give to another person who wants to make a difference for women and girls?
My advice would be to know that making a difference does not happen overnight. I would also say that it takes courage, love, and support so we can all authentically communicate our visions. Only an optimistic mind will reach its destination.
Zulfa, Bijou and Lida from AfricAid at the 2017 East African Girls' Leadership Summit