News / Africa

Liberian Nobel Laureate Talks About Giving Back

Liberian Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee in New York, October 7, 2011.
Liberian Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee in New York, October 7, 2011.
James Butty
Liberian Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee said she wants to use her Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa to provide educational and leadership opportunities for Liberian and other West African women.

Gbowee, a social worker, won the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize with Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Gbowee explained why her foundation, established earlier this year, is focusing on education and youth and women empowerment.

“We have found out, and through my own experience, that in most of our communities there are a lot of young people with potential to be great leaders in the future. What is lacking is the opportunity for them to move forward. So, our goal at the foundation is to make an effort to find those who find themselves in challenging situation but are trying to make it,” she said.

Gbowee said her foundation is also focusing on building leadership skills among young people to bridge what she calls “a leadership gap” in Africa.

“In Africa, we have a little problem when it comes to [finding] leaders that are accountable to their people and responsible for their actions,” said Gbowee.  “And, working with these young people, we’re hoping that we can get to a place where we’re able to at least have a new generation of transformative leaders in Africa - people who will think about providing for their communities and not for themselves.”

She said the foundation focuses on increasing educational opportunities for girls and women by offering full scholarships to selected individuals.

Butty interview with Gbowee
Butty interview with Gboweei
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

“What we do is that we seek opportunities with institutions using my work experience and the platform to give us scholarships, and we provide scholarships, currently for young Liberians to go to school in different parts of the world,” Gbowee said.

Gbowee was head of the national Peace and Reconciliation Commission established by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in 2011. But she resigned in October 2012 citing insufficient progress by government in promoting reconciliation.

She said her foundation will organize in 2013 what she called Peace Through Fair Play, “an overnight camp for youths aged 10 to 19 years old to engage each other through sports and workshops on reconciliation, family planning, and education.”

While she said she loves politics, Gbowee said she has no immediate desire to run for political office in Liberia.

“Let me say one thing, my life has always been one of giving back. I tell people I’m a Liberian and I have the right to decide if I want to go into politics. But one of the things that I can say to you, very clearly, you will not see my name on any ballot paper any time soon,” Gbowee said.

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid