The Founder of Stefania Forte Education Foundation, an American NGO, has called for holistic empowerment of women beyond the narratives.

Dr. Stefanis Forte, who was the Guest Speaker at the 2nd Annual Women Rising Summit in the Mafi Zongo Electoral Area at Mafi Seva in the Central Tongu District of the Volta Region, said it means a lot to empower and support women.

According to her, empowering women is not only about them aiming high but being helped to establish businesses, learn a trade or acquire education which would make them economically independent.

“There is the need for the women most of whom are unemployed and unskilled to be equipped with quality training and skills development to become a meaningful force for community development and nation building,” she said.

She explained that she got attracted to the Mafi Zongo Electoral Area because of the passion of Julius Karl D. Fieve for humanity and community service which is well-known over the world.“You have one of the best Local Assembly Member in the world. Mr Fieve has redefined local governance and development in the world.

“His passion for community service and the development of humanity is what pushes me to visit the Central Tongu District of the Volta Region. I am happy to be partnering with Mr Fieve to push for the development of the area,” she said.

Dr. Forte presented sewing machines to five females and supported five other females with financial support. Over 700 women from all over the Central Tongu District benefitted from the programme.

Over 10 mentors across the world including Dr. Stefania Forte inspired and supported the women. They were urged them to invest in the future of their children for sustainable development.

She pledged to further support some other 15 women in the communities with start-up capital, providing 50 desks to the Mafi Wudzrolo Basic Kindergarten.

The Founder of Stefania Forte Education Foundation will also sponsor two students from the Mafi Wudzrolo D.A Junior High School.

Dr. Stefania Forte also adopted a young orphaned-girl form one of the communities in the Central TonguDistrict for a four-year sponsorship package.

The Theme for the Summit was “Empowering Women for Socio-Economic Growth and Nation Building” and it addressed the right of women to participate in rural development, development planning, access to agricultural credit and marketing facilities.

Dr. Forte wants women to be given equal access to business leadership and entrepreneurship opportunities.

This, she said is “essential both for women’s empowerment and for their ability to affect economic policy-making which determines the quality of life for women and men, their children and communities”.

The summit focused primarily on two aspects of promoting gender equality and empowerment of women that are important for their contribution to sustainable development of women’s economic and political empowerment.

It also looked at their access to quality entrepreneurial and vocation training, business skills and education.

Dr. Stefania Forte earlier met with the Prof. Mathew Tsamenyi, an illustrious son of the Mafi Zongo Electoral Area and the Executive Director of the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), Africa.

They had discussions surrounding women empowerment, grassroots development and the development of the Mafi Zongo Electoral Area.

Prof. Tsamenyi decried the huge disconnect between education and the economic agenda of Ghana and most Africa countries. He described the issue of unemployment as a mind game issue.

According to him, “a lot of graduates lack the skills to initiate and take up opportunities themselves”. That disconnect according to him is the main challenge most countries in Africa are facing.

They both agreed for the need to create well rounded educational and entrepreneur opportunities from the beginning of the educational level especially starting from the grassroots levels or rural communities.

On his part, Julius Karl D. Fieve called for global partnership in sustaining the initiative. He called for direct investment in rural communities for sustainable development.

He said he instituted the Women Rising Summit because of his belief in the potentials of women and their contributions to nation building when empowered and supported.

“I have come to realize that, the potential of women our communities, Ghana and the world to contribute to and benefit from sustainable development as leaders, participants and agents of change has not been fully realized owing to persistent social, economic, and political inequalities.

“They lack the full development and advancement for sustainable social and economic life. These rural women bore the brunt of land litigations, cruel widowhood rights, sexual violence, discriminations and community conflicts.

He believes there is a need for women most of whom are unemployed and unskilled to be equipped with quality training and skills development.

Some of the other Mentors include Apau Richard, a PhD student with the Africa Union Commission in Algeria; Jemima Achivor Braimah, a Media Practitioner; Richard Kweitsu, a Mo Ibrahim Foundation Fellow and Co-Founder of the Global Advocacy and Development Initiative.

It also includes Tulasi Mathias, Founder and CEO Literacy Ambassadors Ghana, Enam Ami Agbozo; Amoo Nicholas, a Banker, Cherubim Mawuli Amenyedor, a Digital Marketing Strategist and Madam Patricia Agbodza, a Girl Child Advocate.