EIB Group project in Malawi hires three impressive women

EIB Group project in Malawi hires three impressive women

 December 08, 2022

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Gender equality is one of the EIB Group's founding values, and working for the European Investment Bank Group (EIB Group) means engaging in impactful projects.

On a Malawi road project gender equality got a boost with three women hired: Sekani Sidira as a Civil Engineer; Delilah Mbvundula as an Environmentalist Officer; and Jaqueline (Jaq) Singano as a Social Worker.

These three inspiring young women from Malawi, evolving in a male-dominated culture, have worked on the most impactful EIB project for their country.

Meet Sekani Sidira

Sekani [pictured above right] had a keen interest in engineering. Even though she knew it is a male-dominated field, she pursued it at university. Her biggest obstacle was a limited amount of money to pay for school. To make ends meet, she set up a micro-business selling educational material to students. Sekani has a passion for giving back to the community and volunteered to lecture part-time at the university during weekends. She graduated with an honours degree in civil engineering, specialising in transport. She has a special interest in intelligent transport systems.

"Women have to be ready to do something on their own. You have to be independent," says Sekani Sidira.

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Meet Delilah Mbvundula

Delilah [pictured above left] realised early on that her passion lay in working in science and nature. She was not attracted to a job where one would be in the office all the time. Hence, studying environmental science at university seemed like a good fit. Delilah was the first born in a household that, apart from her father, a public relations officer in a government department, is all female. Her mother never progressed beyond high school, but “she achieved a lot and encouraged me to go where she couldn’t reach,” Delilah says. She had good role models in both parents, but it was mainly her mother and grandmother who encouraged her to gain experience and independence before getting married. “For females, if you want a career, it’s usually a nurse or a teacher, and girls are not encouraged or confident enough to take on science subjects,” Delilah says. “But my mother and grandmother told me that if I have the tools and the education, I could go on to great heights.” 

"I hope to inspire a few girls—or even a lot of them—to not limit their capabilities," says Delilah Mbvundula.

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Meet Jaqueline Singano

Jaq [pictured above middle], as she prefers to be called, has spent most of her life in the country’s commercial city, Blantyre. She attended Catholic junior and high schools, going on to study social work at the Catholic University of Malawi. Jaq lost her mother when she was 15, but she has an exceptional father who told her she could be anything she desired. Unlike many traditional fathers, Jaq’s father pushed her to work hard and encouraged her to focus on school. “This is unusual, because most fathers would push daughters towards marriage,” she says. Her father strongly supported her wish to go to university. He even helped her prepare for the Road Authority gender programme. Jaq developed an interest in the plight of marginalised people in the community, believing that they need a voice and far more support. She started to research and target a career in social work in her final high school years. 

"My plan is to empower women and be a role model for many others," says Jaqueline Singano.

Read more.

Make an impact in a role with the EIB Group 

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Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.

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