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< Our Work < Programs < African Women in Science Program < 2023

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African Women in Science (AWIS)

2023 Program

The African Women in Science program is a transformative initiative for early-career African women scientists from the African Great Lakes region. The program aims to build capacity and offer mentorship opportunities for African women scientists who are actively engaged in African Great Lakes and freshwater research.

Participants will be a part of a 10-month cohort of African women scientists and become the next generation of African women scientists catalyzing positive change in the African Great Lakes.

Program

The program

To apply, see the application instructions and criteria below. Send questions about the program

to Angela: angela@agl-acare.org

Apply

Applying to the program

Criteria

To apply to the program,

Cohort

2023 Cohort

ETHIOPIA - LAKE TANA

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DR. BIRTUKAN ATINKUT ASMARE

Assistant Professor / Researcher

Bahir Dar University

Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

Birtukan Asmare is an assistant professor and researcher at Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia, and previously served as a vice director at the Institute of Disaster Risk Management and Food Security Studies. She completed her PhD studies in Social and Economic Sciences at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (Boku), Vienna, Austria in 2023. Her research interest is in the socio-economics of the Lake Tana Basin, using multi-disciplinary approaches that integrate social and natural sciences.

UGANDA - LAKE VICTORIA

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FAITH ATUKWATSE

MSc Student / Researcher

Makerere University

Kampala, Uganda

Faith Atukwatse is a Fisheries and Aquaculture Scientist in Uganda with a BSc in Fisheries and Aquaculture from Makerere University and is pursuing an MSc in Zoology. She has six years of experience in capture fisheries, fish farming, and environmental impact assessment, and has worked with international organizations such as GIZ on sustainable fisheries management, regulation of illegal fishing, Fisheries Business Development skilling (BDS), Climate change, and waste management, among others. She is a member of Kitala Fish Farmers Cooperative(KACU), Uganda Fisheries Society (UFS), and African Women Peace Mediators (FEMWISE-AFRICA).

RWANDA - AKAGERA RIVER, LAKE KIVU

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YVONNE BIGENGIMANA

Leader, Africa Mountains and Great Lakes Programme

Albertine Rift Conservation Society

Kigali, Rwanda

Yvonne Bigengimana holds a bachelor’s degree in Biology/Zoology and Conservation, and a Master’s Degree in Biodiversity Conservation and Natural Resource Management. She has ten years of experience working within the Albertine Rift region, Africa Great Lakes and Africa Mountains ecosystems. Currently, she works at the Albertine Rift Conservation Society (ARCOS) as the Manager of the Executive Office and Leader of Africa Mountains and Great Lakes Programme. Her research interests include freshwater ecosystems, integrated water resource management, and water quality management using benthic macroinvertebrates as bioindicators.

KENYA - LAKE VICTORIA

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JULIE BWOGA

Ph.D. Candidate

Rhodes University

Makhanda, South Africa

Senior Vocational and Technical Trainer

Ramogi Institute of Advanced Technology

RIAT Hills, Kenya

Julie Atieno Bwoga is a Senior Trainer at Ramogi Institute of Advanced Technology (RIAT), pursuing a Ph.D. in Fisheries Sciences at Rhodes University in South Africa. She has a Master of Science in Fisheries and Aquatic Science, a Bachelor of Science in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, a Diploma in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, and an Advanced Diploma in Technical Trainers Education. Her research focuses on the “Population Genetics of Gyrodactylus Sp. (Monogenea: Gyrodactylidae), Their Prevalence and Epidemiological Impact in Tilapia Aquaculture in Kenya and South Africa. She has extensive experience in fish health management, post-harvest handling, value addition, fish marketing, and hatchery operations. Her main goal is to promote the increased production of healthy fish.

MALAWI - LAKE MALAWI/NYASA/NIASSA

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MEMORY CHIMPESA

Technical Assistant

Ministry of Natural Resources and Climate Change

Mangochi, Malawi

Memory Chimpesa is a technician at Monkey Bay, Capture Fisheries Research Centre, Malawi. She graduated from the Malawi College of Fisheries with a Certificate in Fisheries Management. She has been involved in a number of fisheries research activities and fishers data management, and is passionate about stock assessment, aquatic biology, and aquaculture.

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO - LAKE KIVU

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NELLY NAKANGU FURAHA

Researcher

Official University of Bukavu / Laboratoire d'Hydrobiologie,

d'Aquaculture et de Gestion des Ressources Naturelles

Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Nelly Furaha holds a Master’s degree in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (Aquaculture) from Kenya and a Bachelor degree in Hydrobiology. She currently works as a Research Assistant at the Official University of Bukavu (UOB) and the Laboratoire d’Hydrobiologie, d’Aquaculture et de Gestion des Ressources Naturelles (LHAGREN) researching on the sustainable management and conservation of the water ressources around the Great Lakes Region and is involved into different aquaculture projects.

TANZANIA - LAKE VICTORIA

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LUCYPHINE KILANGA

Gender Officer

Environmental Management and Economic Development Organization

Mwanza, Tanzania

MSc Student

Open University of Tanzania

Virtual / Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Lucyphine Kilanga is an experienced gender advocate working to address the challenges of women in small scale fisheries in Lake Victoria. She holds a BA in Gender studies from Community Development Training Institute (CDTI-Arusha) and is currently pursuing her Masters in Gender studies at the Open University of Tanzania. She is the technical coordinator of Tanzania Women Fish Workers Association (TAWFA) Lake zone chapter, a network supported by the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, and secretariat member to the African Women Fish processors and Traders Network (AWFISHNET). In the various research conducted, she aims to create an enabling environment for securing sustainable small-scale fisheries, climate resilience food systems and livelihood, as well as move policy attention beyond the generalized, and perhaps limited, perception of women as fish processors and marketers in Lake Victoria Tanzania. In her free time, she enjoys painting, travelling and music dance.

RWANDA - LAKE KIVU

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NAOMIE KAYITESI MANISHIMWE

Ph.D. Candidate

University of Lausanne - Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics

Lausanne, Switzerland

Naomie Kayitesi has a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the University of Rwanda, a master's degree in Water Engineering from IHE Delft, Netherlands, and is currently pursuing a PhD in the Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics (IDYST) of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. Her research focuses on modeling river hydro-morphological responses to land use land cover change and climate change using remote sensing methods and hydrological models. She is a firm believer in the role of scientific evidence as a foundation for developing and implementing sustainable land and water management actions in the face of climate change and anthropogenic activities.

MOZAMBIQUE - LAKE UREMA

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LORENA MATOS

Research and Monitoring Assistant Coordinator

African Parks Network in Bazaruto Archipelago National Park

Vilankulos, Mozambique

Lorena Matos is a conservation ecologist who works as a Research and Monitoring Assistant Coordinator at African Parks Network in Bazaruto Archipelago National Parks in Mozambique. She has a degree in Ecology and Terrestrial Biodiversity Conservation and completed her master's in Conservation Biology. Lorena is interested in studying aquatic organisms and has been monitoring biodiversity, turtle nests, invasive species, and freshwater systems in Bazaruto Archipelago National Park

UGANDA - LAKES VICTORIA, EDWARD, AND GEORGE

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MARIA MPAMULUNGI

Fisheries Inspector

Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries

Entebbe, Uganda

Maria Hellen Mpamulungi holds a BSc in Fisheries and Aquaculture from Makerere University and works as a fisheries inspector in Uganda's Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry, and Fisheries. She is responsible for monitoring all major and minor water bodies in Uganda, including Lakes Victoria, Albert, and Edward. As a woman from a fisheries background, Mpamulungi recognizes the challenges that women in fishing communities face and aspires to create opportunities for women to support each other professionally and technically. She plans to pursue a master's and PhD to broaden her knowledge and perspectives to deliver better to these communities. She is grateful to be part of the AWIS 2023 cohort to learn and grow further.

ZAMBIA - LAKES TANGANYIKA AND KARIBA

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EVA NAMBEYE

Lecturer / Researcher

University of Zambia

Lusaka, Zambia

Ph.D. Candidate

Norwegian University of Life Sciences

As, Norway

Eva Nambeye is a lecturer and researcher at the University of Zambia, pursuing a Ph.D. in Health of Aquatic Resources with Norwegian University of Life Sciences. She holds a BSc. in Agricultural Sciences and an MSc. in Aquaculture, with research interests in sustainable, nutrition-sensitive, and climate-smart food production systems. Eva's current research involves invasive crayfish and micro/nano plastics in Zambian water bodies. Nambeye has technical expertise in developing standards and action plans for the Government of the Republic of Zambia's aquaculture trade, fishery residue monitoring, tilapia, catfish feeds, and fisheries officers' occupational standards.

ZAMBIA - LAKE TANGANYIKA

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CAROLINE NAMPEMBA

MSc Student

INCLUDOVATE

Lusaka, Zambia

Caroline Nampemba is a Natural Resources Conservationist and upcoming Fisheries and Environment Researcher. She has been coordinating, managing, and leading multisectoral market system development projects related to Fisheries and Aquaculture, Technical, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training, Community Development, Climate Change, and Environment in Zambia. Nampemba has a Bachelor's degree in Fisheries and Aquaculture and is interested in researching sustainable freshwater resources and ecosystems

ZAMBIA - LAKE TANGANYIKA

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KUNDANANJI NAWANZI

District Aquaculture Business Extension Officer / Researcher

Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission

Ndola, Zambia

Kundananji Nawanzi is a Professional Bachelor of Science in Fisheries and Aquaculture graduate from Copperbelt University in Zambia. She currently works as a District Aquaculture Business Extension Officer (DABEO) in Ndola district under the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project (ZAEDP), funded by the African Development Bank. Her interests include fisheries and aquaculture, environmental management, climate change, and other natural resource fields for sustainable utilization and development. She aims to contribute to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 1, 2, 12, and 14, focused on poverty reduction, zero hunger, sustainable consumption and production, and life below water.

MALAWI - LAKE MALAWI/NYASA/NIASSA

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Project Field Officer / Researcher

Pact Malawi, Restoring Fisheries for Sustainable

Livelihoods in Lake Malawi (REFRESH) Project

Mzuzu, Malawi

ASANTE DANKIE NKHATA

Asante Dankie Nkhata is an Aquaculture and Fisheries Scientist who works with Pact Malawi as a field technician for a USAID -funded Restoring
Fisheries for Sustainable Livelihoods in Lake Malawi (REFRESH) project which aims at instilling sustainable lakeshore livelihoods achieved by
increasing resiliency to climate change and improving biodiversity conservation through effective and sustainable fisheries co-management best practices. Ms Nkhata has a bachelor's degree in Aquaculture and Fisheries Science and is an upcoming researcher with interests in fisheries biodiversity conservation and Aquaculture for national food security. She believes in a better now and tomorrow for everyone with respect, integrity and inclusion as her core values. Asante loves learning and discovering new things and being a positive change agent.

UGANDA - LAKES VICTORIA, ALBERT, EDWARD, AND KYOGA

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Hydrologist

Ministry of Water and Environment

Kampala, Uganda

AJOK PASKA

Paska Ajok is a Water Resources Engineering graduate with experience in drainage designs, stormwater modeling, hydrology, hydraulics, and database management. She is currently working as a hydrologist with the Ministry of Water and Environment in Uganda, where she is responsible for monitoring water resources, forecasting floods and droughts, and developing policies for the protection and development of water resources. She has worked in all of Uganda's great lakes, and her favorite lakes are Lake Albert and Kyoga.

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO -
LAKES TANGANYIKA, ALBERT, AND EDWARD

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Ph.D. Candidate

Mohammed V University - Faculty of Science of Rabat

Rabat, Morocco

ELYSÉE NZIGIRE RUTAKAZA

Researcher

Center of Research in Hydrobiologie

Bukavu, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Elysée Nzigire Rutakaza holds a master's degree and a bachelor's degree in ecology and is currently pursuing a PhD in algae at Mohammed V University in Morocco. Nzigire Rutakaza is a researcher at the Centre de Recherche en Hydrobiologie and is interested in the composition of the phytoplankton community and its relationship with the productivity of phytophagous species in East African lakes. Her goal is to build a robust botany section, teach new scientists, and raise interest in algology

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO - LAKE ALBERT

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MSc Student

Burundi University and Institute Superieur Pedagogique de Bunia

Bunia, Democratic Republic of the Congo

SANDRINE KAMAKUNE SABITI

Sandrine Kamakune Sabiti is a Biology and Management of Aquatic Ecosystems master's student at Burundi University, passionate about studying fish parasites and ecology in the Congo Basin's waters, especially Lake Albert. She holds a bachelor of science degree from the Higher Pedagogical Institute of Bukavu where she developed a passion for teaching. She aspires to become a professor and also aims to promote women scientists and solve hunger in communities through the conservation of aquatic resources.

KENYA - LAKE VICTORIA

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Ph.D. Candidate

University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna

Vienna, Austria

MOURINE JESIRE YEGON

Mourine Yegon is a freshwater ecologist pursuing a Ph.D. in Aquatic Ecology at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna, Austria. Her research is centered around the relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in freshwater ecosystems. She is dedicated to biodiversity conservation and wants to influence policy and decision-making processes for the sustainable management of freshwater ecosystems in Kenya and the East African Great Lakes region. Additionally, she enjoys working with communities to educate them on environmental conservation for sustainability.

Sponsors

2023 AWIS Sponsors

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The African Women in Science (AWIS) program is actively seeking partnerships. The success of AWIS relies on the support of donors who recognize what investing in the next generation of freshwater experts means for our global freshwater future. Together, we can answer the global call to enhance the participation of women in solving our most critical freshwater issues. To support the AWIS program please reach

Ted Lawrence, IISD-ACARE Executive Director:  ted@agl-acare.org 

The African Women in Science (AWIS) program is a joint program through the International Institute of Sustainable Development and the African Center for Aquatic Research and Education.

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