By Irene Gaitirira
Published November 29, 2017
African Women Educationalists (FAWE) of Kenya has won a US$1 Million prize from Kuwait for what is described as its ‘exemplary work in education-development in Africa’.
Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS), the administrators of the Al-Sumait Prize which covers one of three categories–Health, Food Security and Education– each year, says FAWE is awarded the prize in 2017 for “its achievements in significantly enhancing gender equity and equality in education through targeted programmes, having a profound impact on attitudes and practices towards girls’ education and influencing education policies in 33 African countries.”
While Adnan Shihab-Eldin, Director General of KFAS says “The organization awarded the 2017 Al-Sumait Prize in the field of Education represents innovative, exciting initiatives being carried out to address education access and quality as well as gender equity challenges facing Africa,” Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Chair of the Al-Sumait’s Board of Trustees, says, “Our goal, with this prize, is to promote positive change across Africa, and this newly announced laureate of the Al-Sumait Prize for African Development has been working tirelessly in the field of education to create a positive and sustainable difference across Africa.”
FAWE shall receive the award from Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah, the Amir of the State Kuwait, during the KFAS Prizes Ceremony in December 2017.
Other recipients of the Al-Sumait Prize that commemorates the legacy of the late Dr Abdulrahman Al-Sumait, a Kuwaiti physician who dedicated his life to addressing the health, education and food security challenges confronting Africa and established the Direct Aid humanitarian organization, include Professor Kevin Marsh in recognition of his sustained research and fieldwork to control and eradicate malaria (Health, 2015) and International Potato Center, CIP, and International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, IITA (Food Security, 2016)
Al-Sumait’s Board of Trustees is chaired by Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Kuwait’s First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs. Other board members include: Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Dr Kwaku Aning, Chairman of the Governing Board of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, Chairman of Ghana Nuclear Energy Institute and Former Deputy Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency; Abdulatif Alhamad, Director General and Chairman of the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development; Tareq Al-Mutawa, Executive Member of the Board of Public Gathering Charity Committee; and Makhtar Diop, Vice President for Africa at World Bank.
Al-Sumait Prize for African Development honours individuals and institutions advancing socio-economic, human resources and infrastructure development in Africa.