The Women in Leadership project, by the University of Mauritius

The Women in Leadership project, by the University of Mauritius

Date: July 6, 2019
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The Women in Leadership project was born out of the vision of its three founders, who are academics in the Department of Law, at the University of Mauritius. They wanted to create a platform and safe space for effective discussions, awareness, research and implementation of gender focused initiatives and measures at the University of Mauritius and beyond. Through the organisation of workshops, film and documentary screenings, public discussions, and research on gender equity and equality, the project is focused on encouraging gender representation at all levels of decision making in the public and private sector in Mauritius

The first event to launch the project was the hosting of a Women in Leadership Workshop in April 2018, which brought together 8 women leaders in Mauritius recounting their journeys in different professions. The event was attended by 100 students from the Law Department at the University of Mauritius.

Aims and Objectives of Project

  • A project to empower young women and men in Mauritius to become gender warriors and implement SDGs 5 – Gender Equality and Goal 10 – Reduced Inequalities, through:
  • Facilitating capacity-building initiatives among young women and men to implement the measures under the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development;
  • Creating the impetus to raise awareness about effective representation and participation of women at all levels of decision-making in government and private sector in Mauritius;
  • Providing a safe space for men and women to talk/network about gender issues and provide solutions for a gender equal, equitable and fair world; and
  • Providing the space for impactful research, training and information dissemination on gender equality and equity in Mauritius.


  Amount in MUR
General budget for 2018  150, 000 MUR
Amount contributed in cash by partner organisations for 2018  50, 000 MUR
 General expected budget for 2019  100, 000 MUR



Category Women Men Total % Women
Direct beneficiaries  150 100  250  60 %
Indirect beneficiaries (e.g. through other networks)  100  100  200  50 %
Online beneficiaries (e.g. website access, mailing lists, scholarly articles)  1000  500  1500  50 %
Total  1250  700  1950  64.1 %


Monitoring Success

  • Frequent (monthly) meetings with team members to reflect on lessons/opportunities to improve our events/research strategies/collaborations with stakeholders
  • Gathering feedback from panelists at events
  • Gathering feedback from participants attending events
  • Online feedback on our social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
  • Email correspondences from participants, partners, stakeholders and panelists of events

Types of monitoring and evaluation methods and tools used to measure impact

  • Currently devising questionnaires to gauge the impact of our first event in 2018, where we held the Women in Leadership Workshop
  • Email correspondences with partners and stakeholders to assess feedback regarding impact on society
  • Communicating to our audience on social media to determine whether our initiatives are creating the necessary paradigm shift in awareness and mindset


  • Women empowerment
  • Shattering glass ceilings
  • Public participation
  • Coverage in local media outlets
  • Successful social media campaigns through our Instagram, Twitter and Facebook pages and accounts
  • Education and Training
  • Research Initiatives (more students at UoM focusing their research dissertations on gender issues
  • Creation of a safe space for discussions on gender issues between young professionals whether male or female
  • Lobby in the press for more gender representation at all levels of decision-making and agenda-setting in the public, private and civil society sectors
  • Young female leaders building their network with other women leaders
  • Devising of action plans for female students and young professionals to overcome systemic barriers and grow leadership skills
  • More understanding from male peers about the importance of gender equity and representation in Mauritius
  • Female students and young professionals better equipped to manager gender bias challenges at university and in their workplace
  • A vision for authentic female leadership at all levels of society in Mauritius

Main challenges

  • Funding for events/initiatives
  • Pitching our project to collaborators/partners/funders
  • Ensuring the sustainability of our project
  • Measuring impact in an effective way

Lessons learnt

  • How to prepare a great pitch
  • Being relentless in the pursuit of our aims, objectives and ideals
  • How to convince partners/collaborators to get on board
  • Devising fun and innovative ways to train young female students and female professionals to become more empowered
  • Not losing faith in our abilities to bring about social change and transformation in the field of gender equity and equality in Mauritius

Applying the learning

  • Being always willing to learn from other success stories
  • Acknowledging our weaknesses and striving to be better at every step
  • Being better organised in project management, time management, organisation of events, fundraising and budgeting.


  • Not interested in one off initiatives but we have a year long programme each year: 2018 was the initiation, setting up and launching stages with two main events (Women in Leadership Workshop and the Donation to the Women and Children’s Shelter).
  • This year we have 3 events planned: Screening of the film: ‘On the Basis of Sex’, on the life and legacy of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, about her inspiring journey as a female lawyer and activist in the US; then we have the multistakeholder dialogue scheduled for August 2019 where we will gather policy makers, researchers, members of civil society, the private sector, the government sector, etc to have a multistakeholder and multidisciplinary perspective of the future of female leadership and representation in Mauritius; and finally we will end the year by a fundraising gala dinner in December 2019 to raise money for NGOs working in the field of female empowerment in Mauritius.
  • Through numerous events and initiatives through the year, we aim to keep the buzz on the project going, to keep interest among our participants and audience to the highest level and also continue to do relevant and impactful work in the community
  • We also hope to ensure the sustainability and continued expansion of the project through various partnerships with stakeholders from the public, private and not for profit sectors, and also international partners/collaborators.

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