In the coming days in celebrating the award, KEPSA shall be showcasing some of the work done in the Gender space including in SheTrades with ITC and ABSA Bank
NAIROBI, Kenya: The celebrations of the African Gender Awards 2022, where Kenya Private Sector Alliance [KEPSA] was awarded the Private Sector African Gender Award alongside the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness (CREAW) who were awarded the CSO Africa Gender Award by the ‘Gender is My Agenda Campaign’ (GIMAC), culminated into a celebratory dinner at a city hotel on the 14th of June 2022.
The two organizations had been recognized earlier in the day during a meeting that was held at State House Nairobi to celebrate H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta’s selection as the recipient of the African Gender Award 2022 by GIMAC, having led the country in achieving 11 out of 12 operative articles of the Solemn Declaration on Gender Equality in Africa.
The award was presented to the President by Ms. Benita Diop, the African Union Commission Special Envoy on Women, Peace, and Security who represented the GIMAC selection committee, in an event attended by both KEPSA and CREAW led by their CEOs.
Speaking during the dinner ceremony, Ms. Diop said that the award presented to KEPSA wasn’t just for KEPSA but for the whole of the Kenyan and African business community. Similarly, CREAW represented all Africa Civil Society organizations.
On her part, Prof. Margaret Kobia – Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Public Service, Gender, Senior Citizens Affairs & Special Programmes, appreciated KEPSA for taking up the ‘Gender Agenda’ even before the Government while appreciating the great partnership between KEPSA and the Government over the years. The CS was also grateful to CREAW for setting itself apart as a CSO focused on delivering on gender matters.
“Over the last 13 years, there has been so much to celebrate about the work that led to KEPSA being recognized amongst Africa’s Private sector to receive this award. The management recognizes that for every success, there are those who are in the membership either as individuals, corporations, BMOs, development partners, Government, Civil society, and others, who assist us to become successful. And this award was no different.” The KEPSA CEO Ms. Carole Kariuki told the attendees while receiving the award on behalf of all those who had been part of the gender mainstreaming work at KEPSA and Africa.
“The journey notably began with Ms. Gloria Ndekei, the current KEPSA Foundation Vice-Chair who initiated gender mainstreaming at KEPSA as an institution in all the structures. While working at the ILO Kenya office, she supported women’s business associations, with membership fees to encourage many of them to join KEPSA and worked with the Management on their capacity building.” Ms. Kariuki added.
KEPSA went on to establish the Gender, Women Empowerment, Leadership and Children Sector Board in 2010 with Ms. Ndekei as the first Chair. The sector board is currently known as the Gender Sector Board. This was after some of its work was moved to the KEPSA Foundation in 2015 when the Foundation was established, to allow the sector board to focus on policy and initiatives around women and business.
In the coming days in celebrating the award, KEPSA shall be showcasing some of the work done in the Gender space including in SheTrades with ITC and ABSA Bank, the ‘HE for She Initiative’ with some of the KEPSA leaders; Dr. Manu Chandaria, Dr. Joe Wanjui, Eng. Patrick Obath, the late Karanja Kabage, Mr. Mike Eldon, Mr. Arun Devani, Mr. Lee Karuri, Mr. Bill Lay among others.
KEPSA Gender Sector Board achievements will be celebrated with different members and leaders from Ms. Gloria Ndekei to Ms. Felicity Mbiriri, Ms. Eva Muraya and the current Chair Ms. Mucha Mlingo in Better Business Practices for Children (BBPC), Mothers’ rooms with UNICEF, CSW with the Ministry of Gender, the supplier diversity conferences, the most recent first Private sector gender policy, the KEPSA gender-related COVID-19 initiatives with different BMOs, development partners, corporates among other initiatives.
This award has been possible because of many not mentioned or documented who have silently been part of the KEPSA journey on gender mainstreaming and it’s a culmination of many years of focusing on this agenda.