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African Culture Fund: ‘LEWO – Leadership and Empowerment for Women’ Boot Camp (Mali)

Half a dozen African women, outdoors, singing and smiling. They are dressed in identical white shirts and red and black headscarfs.

Africa today is full of young artists and cultural entrepreneurs who evolve on the job, and very often in the informal sector. Among them, a large number are women who find it even more difficult to make their voices heard on the continent.

The urgency today is to strengthen the leadership and empowerment of women in Africa, but also to create favourable conditions for their freedom of expression and their participation in public life. This will promote the emergence of women leaders and officials capable of claiming their rights. Women in leadership positions will thus become influencers and leaders of change in their respective societies. For the emergence of our societies, we need to give women a voice to express themselves and assert themselves.

It is in this logic that the African Culture Fund has chosen to launch the pan–African program LEWO (Leadership and Empowerment for Women), dedicated to the professionalisation and capacity building of women artists and cultural entrepreneurs in Africa, with a view to strengthening their leadership and contributing to their empowerment, by providing them with the tools necessary for access to international markets.

Thus, the African Culture Fund is launching a call for applications, in partnership with the Institut Kôrè des Arts et Métiers (IKAM Ségou), with a view to selecting 16 female artists and cultural entrepreneurs from West Africa and Central Africa to take part in BOOT CAMP #3 scheduled in Ségou from March 2023.

Applicants must:

  • Be between 21 and 40 years old.
  • Be a female artist (regardless of discipline) or entrepreneur with at least five years of experience, practicing and residing in Africa.
  • Be a national of one of the West African or Central African countries (list below).
  • Be available from March 2023 to participate in the various LEWO programme training and networking activities.

The LEWO programme provides support for participants throughout the duration of the Boot Camp (international transport, accommodation, catering, intercity travel). At the end of the boot camp, the programme will grant a scholarship of 2000 euros to each of the winners and a year of mentoring.


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