Friday, March 3, 2023

On Thursday, March 2, 2023, The President of the Republic of Kenya, H. E. Dr. William Ruto recognized and awarded the University’s Women Economic Empowerment Hub (WEE Hub)  the Economic and Financial Inclusion Award of the Trailblazer Awards 2023 in recognition of its contribution towards women’s financial inclusion during the International Women’s Day Celebration held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) Nairobi. Prof. Mary Kinoti, the Director, Intellectual Property Management Office, received the award on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor, UoN, Prof. Stephen Kiama.

The UoN-WEE Hub, a program of the African Women’s Study Centre, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences was recognized and awarded for its efforts towards women’s financial inclusion under the category Economic and financial inclusion for women and girls through innovation and technology through innovation and technology. 

The achievement was realized through the thematic area of Affirmative Action Funds (AAFs) and Women’s Entrepreneurship, whereby the Hub evaluates the AAFs with the aim of generating evidence on what works for women’s economic empowerment. It utilizes the evidence generated to inform policy decisions and program interventions that transform the lives of women.

In addition, the Hub is incubating over six hundred individual and collective women’s businesses where they are exposed to innovative technology and value addition

The WEE hub was recognized for efforts made towards women and girls’ empowerment through innovation and technology. The gala awards ceremony was the pinnacle of the annual International Womens day celebration in honour of the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women across the world. This year’s event themed; DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality, recognized high achieving organizations and individuals in tech leadership for their contributions and demonstrated expertise in driving business value addition through the Annual Trailblazer Awards.

In her remarks, the Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Public Service, Gender and Affirmative Action, Hon Aisha Jumwa, lauded the president for showing goodwill in women empowerment by writing to parliament on the two-thirds gender rule which has spearheaded ongoing works to implement this as legislation.

“Women are a critical national asset with tremendous potential to shape, to influence and to contribute to all spheres of national development. Empowering women, essentially empowers the family, the society and the nation,” said CS Aisha Jumwa.

In his remarks, H.E. the President Hon. William Samoei Ruto said that the government has tripled the Women Enterprise Fund from 4.5 billion shillings to 13.5 billion shillings and will make it easier for women to access the fund. “We are going to eliminate bureaucracy, we are going to eliminate all intermediaries so that women can access funds directly from the Women Enterprise Kitty,” said H.E. William Ruto.

On Tuesday, March 7, 2023, the Vice Chancellor Prof Stephen Kiama officially received the award including two others  won by the University of Nairobi  during the DIAR awards 2023 for inclusivity.  The University was recognized for its contribution towards women’s financial inclusion. In his remarks, The Vice Chancellor, Prof Stephen Kiama said that as a result of these awards, people and institutions want to associate with the UoN brand, acknowledging that the university is a strong brand. “As a result of these awards, we are getting a lot of guests who just want to come and visit,” said Prof Kiama. He finished by saying that we have to make the University more sustainable, strong and vibrant.

Read more on the UoN WEEhub here