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The Africa Human Capital Plan: Why Investing in Women & Girls Matters Now More Than Ever

In Sub-Saharan Africa, evidence shows that investing in women’s and girls’ education, health and economic opportunities is fundamental to realizing the continent’s human capital potential and spurring sustainable economic growth. Over the past few decades, countries in the region have made considerable progress addressing a range of outcomes that are critical for women’s and girls’ empowerment, including legal reforms on the age of marriage and gender-based violence. However, women and girls remain particularly vulnerable by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has exacerbated existing gender gaps and inequalities. The COVID-19 response must therefore be centered on protecting, preserving and sustaining financial and social investments in women and girls.

As part of the Human Capital Project Global Forum, which brings together government focal points from around the world, this event will highlight testimonies from voices with first-hand experience and expertise on why protecting and advancing women’s and girls’ social and economic empowerment in the immediate and long-term matters now more than ever. Government leaders and development partners will also share lessons learned from previous crisis, efforts to protect investments in human capital, and how they are pursuing this critical development agenda amidst the current crisis.

 

AGENDA

    • Hosts: Nayé Bathily and Edith Jibunoh, External Affairs, World Bank
    • Axel van Trotsenburg, Managing Director of Operations, World Bank

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  • Panel discussion:

    • Henrietta Fore, Executive Director, UNICEF
    • Dr. Natalia Kanem – United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, UNFPA
    • Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka – United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, UN Women
    • Mari Pangestu, Managing Director, Development Policy and Partnerships, World Bank
    • Moderator: Nayé Bathily, Manager, External Affairs, Western & Central Africa, World Bank


    Special Message: Deborah Wetzel, Director, Africa Regional Integration, World Bank

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  • Feature Story from Niger: Innayatou is the first girl in the family to go to school. She has big plans for the future.

    Special Message: DJ Switch

    Panel Discussion:

    • Jaha Dukureh, CEO & Founder of Safe Hands for Girls, and Africa Regional UN Women Ambassador
    • Soukeyna Kane, Country Director, Mali, Guinea, Niger and Chad, World Bank
    • David Moinina Sengeh, Minister of Education & Chief Innovation Officer, Sierra Leone
    • Moderator: Nayé Bathily, Manager, External Affairs, Western & Central Africa, World Bank


    Special Message:

    • Idah Pswarayi-Riddihough, Country Director, Madagascar, Mozambique, Mauritius, Comoros and Seychelles, World Bank
    • Nathan Belete, Country Director, Senegal, Mauritania, Gambia, Cabo Verde and Guinea Bissau, World Bank

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  • Feature Story from Sierra Leone: Salamatou Bangura, from Bonga Wharf, shares how a social safety net program has helped her and her family.

    One-on-One Discussion

    • Dr. Anita Asiimwe, Director-General, National Child Development Agency, Rwanda & Human Capital Plan Focal Point
    • Edith Jibunoh, Manager, External Affairs, Eastern & Southern Africa, World Bank


    Special Message: Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, Country Director, South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and Eswatini, World Bank

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  • Panel Discussion:

    • Mamta Murthi, Vice President, Human Development, World Bank
    • Hafez Ghanem, Regional Vice President, Eastern and Southern Africa, World Bank
    • Ousmane Diagana, Regional Vice President, Western and Central Africa, World Bank
    • Pablo Fajnzylber, World Bank Acting Vice President, Infrastructure, World Bank
    • Moderator: Edith Jibunoh, Manager, External Affairs, Eastern & Southern Africa, World Bank

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    • Closing words from the hosts Nayé Bathily and Edith Jibunoh

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Intervenants

Mari Pangestu, Managing Director, Development Policy and Partnerships, World Bank

Managing Director, Development Policy and Partnerships, World Bank

Managing Director of Operations, World Bank

United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, UN Women

Executive Director, UNICEF

Musician, Poet, Dancer, Motivational Speaker, Actress

Minister of Education & Chief Innovation Officer, Sierra Leone

Jaha Dukureh, CEO & Founder of Safe Hands for Girls, and Africa Regional UN Women Ambassador. Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

CEO & Founder of Safe Hands for Girls, and Africa Regional UN Women Ambassador  

Country Director, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad, World Bank

Dr. Anita Asiimwe, Director-General, National Child Development Agency

Director-General, National Child Development Agency, Rwanda

Pablo Fajnzylber, Acting Vice President and Director of Strategy and Operations, Infrastructure, World Bank

Acting Vice President and Director of Strategy and Operations, Infrastructure, World Bank

r. Natalia Kanem, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)

United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund (...

Mamta Murthi, Vice President, Human Development, World Bank

Vice President, Human Development, World Bank

Vice-President, Western and Central Africa, World Bank

Vice President, Eastern and Southern Africa

Hosts

Nayé Bathily, Manager, External Affairs, Western and Central Africa, World Bank

Manager, External Affairs, Western and Central Africa, World Bank

Edith Jibunoh, Manager, External Affairs, Eastern & Southern Africa, World Bank

Manager, External Affairs, Eastern & Southern Africa, World Bank

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