My Community Matters: Reflections on Women's Rights Global Initiatives in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

My Community Matters: Reflections on Women

Muadi Mukenge Program Director for Sub-Saharan Africa, Global Fund for Women and Board Member, African Studies Association

Monday, November 04, 2013
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
10383 Bunche Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Interventions to advance women's rights in Sub-Saharan Africa, and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in particular, create concern when they focus more on change at the personal level without the requisite contextual transformations that make women's promotion sustainable. The presentation offers reflections on Congolese perceptions of community, versus the instrumentalist approach of many donor institutions and governments that aim to support individual women without addressing the necessary reforms needed in the larger community which suffers from a conflux of political and economic oppressions. The talk will draw on the efforts of the Global Fund for Women to introduce a dialogue on systemic change while developing its grant-making in the Great Lakes Region. Building from LACMA’s Luba exhibition, “Shaping Power,” with all its historical and political significance, the talk offers further positive examples of Congolese women's agency, and seeks to contribute to a narrative contrary to the mainstream image of the Congo.


 Muadi Mukenge is the Program Director for Sub-Saharan Africa at the Global Fund for Women and oversees strategic grant-making to women's rights organizations of over $1.8 million per year. She brings a background in women's health, and African politics and economic development, and frequently advises donors on their Africa programs. Mukenge presents often, including at international conferences and media outlets such as NPR and Pacifica Radio Affiliates, and
 has contributed chapters to edited volumes as well as written opinion pieces. Since joining the Global Fund in 2004, Mukenge has increased support in the areas of women's movements in conflict regions, empowerment of rural women, and expansion of grants to French-speaking countries. She has facilitated grantee convenings in multiple countries and also participates in donor dialogues. Mukenge previously worked at the Pacific Institute for Women's Health (Los Angeles), Coro Southern California, and the African Studies Center at UCLA, where she earned a master's degree in African Studies. She is originally from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and serves on the Boards of Priority Africa Network and the African Studies Association and is active in volunteer organizations focused on human rights and development in the Congo.


Pay-by-space & all-day $12) parking available in lot 3.

Cost : Free and open to the public

UCLA African Studies Center310-825-3686

Sponsor(s): African Studies Center