WOFAN’s unwavering devotion to the wellbeing of the Nigerian woman and the promotion of child rights has again been recognized. This time, the recognition was a Nigeria Leadership Initiative (NLI) national award for value-based leadership.
Founder and Executive Director of the organization, Hajia Salamatu Garba was nominated and selected as recipient of the NLI 2012 Value-based leadership award at the end of 2012 in recognition of the Executive Director’s “creditable leadership and valuable contributions to women and child rights issues in Nigeria.”
The award also recognized the ED’s untiring efforts in ensuring WOFAN provides a wide range of excellent services, which include “education on health issues, economic empowerment, and micro-credit for women farmers, child care development, and leadership skills to women in Northern Nigeria.”
Speaking at the award ceremony, which was chaired by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, the organizers explained that the award recognizes Hajia Salamatu’s “dedicated service and selfless devotion to the wellbeing of women and children.” Notably the award committee also considered the ED’s “effectiveness, commitment, and patriotism” as well as WOFAN’s promotion of value-based leadership.” The organizers thanked Hajia Salamatu and WOFAN on behalf of countless children, women and other Nigerians, for their significant contributions which are “testaments to the indelible steps in the sands for the good of all Nigerians.”
Receiving the award on behalf of herself and WOFAN, Hajia Salamatu thanked the organizers for the recognition, noting that it was acknowledgment of the importance of women and children to the overall development of the country. She added that the award would spur her and her WOFAN team to strive harder to improve the lives of rural women and youths across the nation.
Since she founded the organization in 1995, Hajia Salamatu Garba has been playing a key role in building and directing the Women Farmers Advancement Network, a non-governmental organization in northern Nigeria. Presently, she is the Executive Director of the network, managing the USAID/WOFAN WASH project in Nigeria.
Before becoming the Executive Director of WOFAN, she had worked as a university lecturer in two Nigerian universities (Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and Bayero University, Kano), where she served for 15 years, teaching plant pathology and providing training in gender issues.
Over the years, WOFAN and Hajia Salamatu have worked determinedly to mobilize and train rural communities in Northern Nigeria around issues of water and sanitation management, child health care and development, sexual reproductive health, HIV/AIDS reduction strategies, the rights of women and children in Islam, safe motherhood, public health and personal hygiene.