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Promoting gender equality online

Hazel Alfon, UN Online VolunteerHazel Alfon, UN Online VolunteerRiddhima A. Mehta, UN Online VolunteerRiddhima A. Mehta, UN Online Volunteer
08 March 2012

Ghana: UN Online Volunteers Hazel Alfon (Philippines) and Riddhima A. Mehta (India) provide support to the first African Regional Conference on Women Access to Trade and Finance . The African conference is being organized by the Alliance for African Women Initiative (AFAWI), a non-governmental organization based in Ghana.

In September 2012 the conference will bring together government representatives, development agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), academia, women communities, volunteers, financial institutions and local media. They will work together to come up with concrete and innovative ways to empower women in the areas of access to credit, micro-finance and women’s contributions to trade and sustainable economic development.

Hazel, who has a Masters in Entrepreneurship for Social and Development Entrepreneurs, uses her knowledge of resource mobilization for community-based livelihood programmes to support AFAWI’s objectives for the conference. Her main task is to develop and disseminate communications materials.

Hazel sees her volunteer involvement in empowering women in Africa as not only a learning experience, but also a chance to share her skills to benefit the oppressed and disadvantaged.

“I love this volunteer experience… giving a helping hand to achieving gender equality through promoting sustainable livelihoods.”
-- Hazel Alfon, UN Online Volunteer

Hazel believes that poverty reduction is possible through sustainable livelihood programmes and wants to spend her life sharing her talents to help the poor and the oppressed.

Riddhima , who has a Masters in Political Science and extensive NGO experience, serves as Fundraising and Liaison Manager for the NGO, supporting the organization in liaising with donors and suggesting fundraising strategies for the African regional conference .

“I was motivated to work with the Alliance for African Women Initiative (AFAWI) because this organization promotes women’s empowerment which is integral to sustainable development, a major goal of the United Nations and countless development agencies throughout the world.”
-- Riddhima A. Mehta, UN Online Volunteer

Riddhima is enthusiastic about her online volunteering experience and states that it is a great resource for small and underfunded NGOs, enhancing their capacity, and allowing them to make even more of a difference in their communities.  Personally, her volunteering experiences have given her a chance to showcase her leadership, connect with other online volunteers from Geneva to the Philippines, and apply her skills where they were most needed.

UNV is administered by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)