Four win 'Ambassador for a Day' Competition
The four winners.

Four win 'Ambassador for a Day' Competition

Four young women have been adjudged winners of the ‘Ambassador for a Day Competition’ at a ceremony in Accra.

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The Ambassador for a Day is a contest which provides a platform for young women to become leaders and advocate for change in their communities. The winners will have the opportunity to voice their opinions and share their ideas on how a gender-equal future can be shaped in their communities.

The contest which was organised by the British High Commission with assistance from the Swiss, Norwegian, and French ambassadors is also intended to give the winners an opportunity to spend a day with the ambassadors to get first-hand information on what a day in their lives looks like.

Aside from this, the winners will also receive long-term mentorship on what they have decided to do to imporve life in their communities.

Address

In her welcome address, the British High Commissioner, Her Excellency (HE) Harriet Thompson, said to coincide with International Women’s Day which falls on March 8, every year, the United Kingdom's (UK’s) foreign Commonwealth and Development offices across the globe have designated the month of March as gender and equalities month.

“This year, we celebrate ‘Ambassador for a Day’ as the UK launches a new Women and Girls Strategy, putting gender equality firmly at the centre of everything we do,” she added.

She said her outfit in partnership with CAMFED, a non-governmental organisation, Plan International Ghana, and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) launched the Ghana edition of the competition in February.

“We need to support the realisation of the sustainable development goal, (SDG) Five, which seeks to promote gender equality and women's empowerment not only as a fundamental human right but also because it's a necessary foundation for a peaceful, stable and prosperous world.

Women and girls represent half of the world's population but gender inequality, as all of us know, persists and stagnates progress in many countries including Ghana. Inequalities faced by girls can be seen at birth and in some countries, girls are deprived of access to even basic services such as, education, health care and proper nutrition.

Congratulating the winners, Ms Thompson said: Today of course we celebrate our amazing winners, but we also celebrate every single woman who applied, we celebrate our incredible partners, CAMFED, Plan International Ghana, and UNFPA, and we celebrate women and girls the length and breadth of this country. This competition reminds us of the need for equity, the need to create space for equality so that men and women around the world can stand shoulder-to-shoulder.

The Swiss Ambassador, H.E. Simone Giger, thanked the British High Commissioner for organising such a programme and said for equality to work and violence against women and girls to stop, young women needed to step up and tell the whole world what was wrong with the reality they were living today.

She said that was what the competition was all about – to empower the girls to bring about positive change so that they could be ambitious and visionary so that they could effect change in the country.

The Norwegian Ambassador, HE Ingrid Mollestad, said she was convinced that women and girls could be anything that they wanted to be if they were given equal opportunities as men.

She said she was looking forward to brainstorming with Martha, the young girl she has been paired with to come up with ideas to help girls’ and women’s empowerment.

The only man among the ambassadors, the French Ambassador, HE Jules Armand, said the girls would be great change makers because of the opportunity they had been given and was positive that one day, one of them would be an ambassador.

He congratulated the girls and commended the British High Commission for organising the competition.

The Competition

The competition was for girls between the ages of 16 and 19 years and they were supposed to create a video or write an essay talking about what they would do to bridge the gap of inequality in their communities if they worked as an ambassador for a day.

Afterwards, the British High Commissioner together with the three ambassadors reviewed the applications and adjudged the four young women winners.

The winners

Wilhelmina Ogerh Opesika Lawerh-Lawerh, a 19-year-old former student of the Ahantaman Girls’ Senior High School in Western Region, has been paired with the British High Commissioner, Her Excellency (H.E.) Harriet Thompson, and will spend a day with her in her office.

Seventeen-year-old Shekuratu Tipagya Yahaya, a student of the University for Professional Studies (UDS) will also be spending a day with the Swiss Ambassador, H.E. Simone Giger.

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Wasila Umar, 20 years, and also a student of UDS will spend a day with the French Ambassador, HE Jules Armand.

While Martha Allotey, a student of the Christian Methodist Senior High School, will spend a day with the Norwegian Ambassador, H.E. Ingrid Mollestad.

The girls were given certificates and they also went through a mentorship process with the ambassadors.

 

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