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Young_Leader_Salma_Abdalla_Article 1Over the past decade, I have seen women on every international development agenda. With all the uprightness opportunities and the supportive initiatives, women’s participation is still unambitious, predominantly in the MENA region. One can argue that social norm, lack of knowledge, and leadership skills are the core issues that hinder girl’s involvement, however, this is not the case in every country in the region. The data regarding women in this region are still not accurate enough to reach a concrete conclusion of the reason why.

My project’s main objective is to shape a new strategy to expand economic opportunities in the MENA region through encouraging women in entrepreneurship. This strategy includes identifying women’s assets and needs, then creating auspicious capacity development programs. My sole focus is on empowering women’s entrepreneurship in the energy field, due to the field’s diverse possibilities and promising future.

My passion for women in the energy field started 5 years ago after gaining interest and reading into my country’s history. Over 22 years, Sudan has been suffered economically. This has mainly affected women and led to devastation by extreme poverty, illiteracy, and social discrimination. As a result, they (women) migrate or work in inadequate vacancies. I have a profound belief that my project will contribute in inspiring a new generation of female entrepreneurs creating decent jobs with equal pay. The ripple effects of this will be a positive contribution the Sudanese economy.

I started my journey with interning at the Regional Centre of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (RCREEE). RCREEE is an intergovernmental organization aimed at accelerating the deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency practices in the region. I am involved with the “Women and Energy in the MENA region” project. It represents an innovative solution for the implementation of the SDG Agenda 2030, the Paris Agreement and the AU Agenda 2063.

My role in this project is mainly conducting research for better understanding of this topic through various means. For instance, reaching out to national/ international/regional experts, and building a network platform in order to exchange ideas. I also mapped out initiatives and programs that we can support and/or learn from their experience.

I will like to emphasize that I believe women are the cornerstone of any developmental plan. I am humbled by females’ achievements in the region. Hoping for a better future, I present my project, which can only succeed with collaborative efforts and all possible support.

 

Read more about Salma: http://youngleadersfordev.org/author/salma-abdalla/

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