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07 October 2013

medica mondiale Liberia: Caroline Bowah Brown is new Country Director

In October 2013, Caroline Bowah Brown will assume the post of Country Director, playing an important role in medica mondiale Liberia's transition to an independent organisation. “This appointment is not only about me: it is a message to every woman out there. They can see themselves in me and recognise that they, too, can become very strong women in Liberia.“

The 38-year-old women’s rights activist has been the Deputy Managing Director of medica mondiale Liberia since 2010 and is very aware of the challenges her new role will present: “I want to see our very young organisation position itself well, raise the finances we need and develop healthily, ensuring a smooth transition from being an international NGO to an independently managed, national organisation."

From 2005 to 2010 Ms Bowah Brown worked for the Foundation for Human Rights and Democracy in Liberia, latterly as Managing Director. Previously she had graduated with a Masters in Economic Management from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda, going on to teach as a lecturer at the University of Liberia. In 2008, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf appointed her to the Board of the National Office for Veterans' Affairs, which supports war widows. In the wake of the civil war (1989-2003), she joined forces with other activists to campaign for women's rights to be represented in Liberia's Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

medica mondiale has been working in Liberia since 2006. Its women’s centre in Fish Town has become an important contact point in the structurally impoverished south-eastern region. The organisation’s workers in three provinces offer advice on issues related to sexualised violence and health. They also carry out training sessions for employees in the police, health and legal sectors. In remote village communities, solidarity groups have been established and volunteer community advisers have been trained. These help to establish non-violent ways of living together in many ways, including public awareness events on the consequences of violence. According to current plans, medica mondiale Liberia will become an independent organisation run by local staff in October 2014: Medica Liberia

Photo: Sanne Kaperlat/medica mondiale