Olutosin MustaphaSunday, April 2, 2017
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“Train a girl and you have trained a nation.” is an adage.

oward Gardener, an Harvard educator has described intelligence as not the ability of passing or failing an examination but by an individual`s ability to influence his or her community positively in his famous theory known as “Frame of Minds: Theory of Eight Multiple Intelligence”

As 2017 Annual United Nations Commission on Status of Women CSW 61 came to an end few days ago, it is worthy to salute the contributions of all women especially the NGOs -Non Governmental Organizations founded and run by women towards sustaining the development goals of the United Nations, for all the countries in the world by the year 2030. Every year in March, women`s organizations converge in New York at the headquarters of the United Nations to deliberate on policies that have worked and they network with other organizations in order to learn more and receive more support for their organizations. There are many women who are advocating for poverty eradication, improvement of characters and values in the society, education of all children, wellness awareness, health education on deadly diseases, prevention of communicable disease, cervical and breast cancer screening, more women in legislature, more women in business, women empowerment to improve their communities, families and community unity in conflict resolution forum, rights of widows and orphans, religion and moral instructions, and so many policies to sustain the development goals of the United Nations.

It is important to salute the contributions of women, especially African women, in sustaining the development goals of United Nations in Africa, America, and the rest of the world. African women are very influential. Historically, we have had many women who sacrificed themselves to improve their communities. For example in Nigeria, we had Moremi Ajasoro, Queen Amina, Emotan, Margaret Ekpo, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, Idia, and many influential women whose names were not written in history books but they contributed greatly to developments in Nigeria. Many women are following their directions by influencing their communities positively. Apart from the wives of state governors who support their husbands by founding their own NGOs, many influential individuals also took the bold steps of initiatives and founded their own NGO to sustain developmental goals in Africa and the rest of the world. Organizations like International Women`s Society of Nigeria, Nigerian Women Medical Association, Federation of Female Lawyers of Nigeria, Lagos State House of Assembly, Queens College Lagos Old Girls Association, Ministry of Women Affairs in all the countries of the world. Kudos to all of them for the great work they do in Africa and the rest of the world!

In America, African women are also sustaining developmental goals of the United Nations for all countries in America through their great work of contributing to their community developments. We have many African women such as Chief Joyce Adewunmi, the founder of New York African Chorus Ensemble and a Nigerian-American, Hajia Ramatu Ahmed the founder of African Life Center who is a Ghanaian-American, Ms Sylvie who is a Cameron-American and founder of Marva Foundation and Balafon Communications. Mrs. Olamide Davies- Talabi who is a Nigerian-American and founder of Miss Africa Tri-state in America, Ms. Arao who is an Uganda-American and the founder of African Journalists and Writers in Diaspora. Dr. Grace Enoma who is a Nigerian-American and founder of the Association of Nigerian Nurses in America. Mrs. Isseu Diouf -Campbell who is a Senegalese-American and founder of African Publishers Association in America and Afrikaspotlights.com. Ms.Nkechi Ogbobo who is a Nigerian-American and founder of Kechi Projects. Ms. Claudine Marie Mukamabano who is a Rwandan-America and founder of Kukin din ho(Why do I Exist?) a Rwandan genocide survivor. Dr Ada Okika who is founder of UNESCO Global Education and also a Nigerian-American. Madame Si who is the co-founder of Malian Cultural Center and also a Malian-American. Attorney Tokunboh Sofola who is one of the founders of African Women at United Nations in collaboration with the late Chief Mrs. Olabisi Olateju-Olagbegi of blessed memory. Dr. Marie Linton -Umeh, the founder of Flora Nwapa Literary Society and African Widows Rights` representative at the UN who is a Caribbean-American but Nigerian by marriage. Ms Bisi who is a Liberian-American and one of the founders of African Women Organizations in America. Prof Okereke , a Nigerian-American who is one of the directors of NIDO-Nigerians in Diaspora Organizations and actively involved in promoting welfare of Women in America and Africa. Former Miss Universe Ms Mpule who is a Botswana-American and founder of Mpule Foundation assisting women and youth all over the universe. Ms. Evelyn Joe, a Cameroonian-American based in Washington DC who coordinates Africans in diaspora for good governance. There are many other great African women in America that I forgot to mention. Kudos to all of you for your great contributions to humanity.

A special salute to Her Excellency, Hajia Amina Mohammed who is now the deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. She is one of the African women contributing to developments from grass root level to the global world. She is a Nigerian-British by birth. She is one of us! We used to and still have conferences on sustaining development goals at the UN Headquarters and at the Nigeria Consulate in New York. She was the coordinator of the Millennium Development Goals in Nigeria and Minister of Environment in the present administration before her appointment as the deputy Secretary-General of the UN. Congratulations to Her Excellency, Hajia Amina Mohammed.