Offer: Call for Proposals: African Women's Fellowship Opportunity, with Akili Dada (Applications due 15 January 2013)
The Akili Dada Fellows program awards year-long, renewable fellowships to young women leaders engaged in social change projects of their design. The program serves as an incubator providing financial, intellectual, mentoring, and networking resources to young women as they grow their projects to scale and sustainability. These fellowships were created in direct response to the absence of African women among the ranks of those celebrated in existing social entrepreneurship incubators.
By selecting from and building the capacity of some of Africa’s most innovative young women change-makers, Akili Dada is meeting the urgent need for both more African women in leadership, as well as the overall need for transformative leadership across the continent. Akili Dada invests in talented young women from underprivileged backgrounds by providing:
- Direct financial assistance, which includes comprehensive scholarships enabling brilliant girls to access top high schools they have qualified for but cannot afford to attend. Akili Dada also provides seed funding to allow young women from marginalized communities to grow their social change projects to scale and sustainability.
- Personalized and group mentoring by a cohort of dedicated professional women committed to blazing the trail and supporting their younger sisters’ journeys to success.
- Rigorous leadership skills training based on a service learning pedagogy where young women learn how to lead by designing and driving social change projects in their marginalized home communities.
The Akili Dada Fellowship:
Informed by an evaluation of the organization’s strategic/comparative advantage and a growing need to strengthen the infrastructure supporting leadership development among the current beneficiaries, Akili Dada launched its Innovation in Leadership Program in 2012.
The core of the organization's expanded mandate will be the Akili Dada Fellowship. Its key strategies draw from the success of the organization’s high school program, namely, investing in young women from underprivileged backgrounds financially, provision of mentoring opportunities as well as creating spaces to learn about and exercise leadership.
To be launched in January 2013, the Akili Dada Fellowship program is an opportunity for African women to design and implement solutions to the challenges faced by their communities. These one-year fellowships (renewable for up to 3 years) will be awarded to young women leaders between the ages of 17-35 who are driving transformative change in their communities and are looking to grow their projects to scale and sustainability.
Fellows will be selected on the basis of the strength of their social change project, previous leadership initiative, willingness to learn from peers and more experienced mentors, and the ability to share their skills with peers and intended project beneficiaries. All fellows will need to have deep roots in the communities they seek to transform and be from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. In order to reach out to young women who may not have had access to formal education, selection will not be based on past academic performance. Applications from young women engaged in social entrepreneurship are encouraged.
Akili Dada fellows will benefit from a modest stipend for the duration of the fellowship, a series of seminars from experts in the field, site visits to successful social entrepreneurship organizations, an assigned mentor, access to the Akili Dada network of funding partners and social change agents, and access to Akili Dada’s office facilities. By the completion of the program Akili Dada expects fellows to possess the skills and resources required to lead a strong, healthy, sustainable, and accountable organization that is bringing about measureable social change.
- Be a woman between the ages of 17-35.
- Be from an economically disadvantaged background.
- Demonstrate previous leadership initiative and experience.
- Be implementing or in the process of conceptualizing a social change project aimed at providing a solution to an identified challenge in their community. (3 page proposal expected with the application).
- Demonstrate that they have deep roots in the communities they seek to transform.
Applicants are expected to submit the following:
- Complete Application Form
- A proposal that answers all the questions included in the application form.
- Two Letters of Recommendation from individuals well acquainted with you, your commitment to social change work, your demonstrated leadership initiative and experience, and your connection to the community where you intend to implement your fellowship project.
How to Submit Your Application:
Send your completed application via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, 15th January, 2013. Your proposal and letters of recommendation may be scanned and sent as e-mail attachments, or may be mailed separately.
If you choose to mail a hard copy to Akili Dada, use the following address:
- Kavinya E. Makau
Director-Innovation in Leadership Program
P.O Box 27847-00100