As we prepare to welcome the 8th cohort of MILEAD Fellows to Ghana to kick of the yearlong fellowship, Josiane Sombo has been working tirelessly behind the scenes to coordinate varying aspects of the three-week residential institute. As Program Officer responsible for the MILEAD portfolio, she liaises with relevant partners and team members to mobilize funding for the program, schedule faculty and communicate with selected fellows to plan for their time in Ghana from July 12-August 2. Josiane comes with an expansive background as a human rights activist with a keen interest in women rights. She has served in similar roles within civil society organizations including the Organization of Active Women in Cote d’Ivoire (OFACI) and UN Women Office in Cote d’Ivoire. In 2012, Josiane was nominated as a member of the West African Women Election Observation (WAWEO) to observe elections with a gender-sensitive lens in some west African countries.
A true embodiment of what it means to show up as a “Whole Woman” (bringing all of who you are to what you do), Josiane equally enjoys her journey as a mother, wife, mentor and woman of faith. She believes in women’s leadership potential and the need to harness and unleash this potential for the benefit of national development. She earned a Master’s degree in Ethics and Governance, specializing in Human Rights. Prior to this, she completed another Master’s Program in Public Law at the University of Cocody, Felix Houphouet-Boigny, Cote d’Ivoire. Furthermore, Josiane obtained a Certificate in International Human Rights from the International Institute of Human Rights, Strasbourg-France. A native of Cote d’Ivoire who currently resides in Ghana with her family, her professional experience covers women’s empowerment, gender, human rights and social justice. Through her work, Josiane has been exposed to and has adapted to different work settings, including at the community-level, national and international work environments. She has done tremendous work in resource mobilization interfacing with bi-lateral and multi-lateral development agencies, governments and other public and civil society institutions.
“At Moremi Initiative, Josiane’s addition has already made an enormous difference-she brings professionalism, cordiality, efficiency, a proactive and solution-oriented spirit to her work and team engagement”, says Maame Afon Yelbert-Sai-Director, Programs and Partnerships. She is a positive and determined person who nurtures authentic relationships and embraces the values of honesty, love, simplicity and respect. Josiane shares the firm belief that “one is a leader to stand up for the interest of others, not for one’s own personal gains.” We couldn’t agree more with Josiane given Moremi’s firm belief that “before leadership comes service” and “to whom much is given, much is expected.” Of Moremi Initiative Josiane says, “it is a unique space to contribute to social change through the organization’s commitment to equip, engage and inspire a new generation of women leaders for Africa.”
Josiane is also quick to express her gratitude to be part of Team Moremi and we also share the same sentiment and appreciate the opportunity to learn, grow, build together and catalyze sustainable change for women and girls and for the African continent broadly.
Josiane, Akwaaba and Welcome Home!