StFX’s Coady Institute to lead $10 million project in support of women’s leadership

StFX’s Coady Institute to lead $10 million project in support of women’s leadership

Antigonish, NS, March 4, 2020 

Today, St. Francis Xavier University’s Coady Institute (Coady) announced it is leading a collaborative five-year project to strengthen gender equality and women’s leadership opportunities around the world.

The project, titled ENGAGE! Women’s Empowerment and Active Citizenship, will see Coady work with organizations on the ground in communities across five countries (Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Haiti, India, and Tanzania) to strengthen individual and organizational capacity while providing tools and opportunities for women to increase their own empowerment. The partner’s projects will focus on areas such as leadership development, social enterprise, climate adaptation, leadership and management education and future of work all with the goal of gender equitable change.

Co-designed by Coady Institute and five partner organizations, ENGAGE! will advance gender equality and poverty reduction by enhancing women’s capacity to participate in the social and economic life of their communities.

“This year marks the 60th anniversary of Coady and its position as a global leader in employing education and collaboration to effect positive social changes,” remarked StFX President, Dr. Kevin Wamsley “This initiative perfectly aligns with the Coady legacy of working directly with communities to better societies, all over the world.  

Central Nova MP Sean Fraser, was on hand to unveil the ENGAGE! Women’s Empowerment & Active Citizenship project.

“The ENGAGE! project provides a wonderful opportunity for Coady staff to collaborate with our partners in their home countries and communities, sharing and learning about the practice of asset-based development on the ground,” Gord Cunningham, Executive Director, Coady Institute, said. “We will then bring those lessons learned back to the Coady classroom here in Antigonish.”

The five organizations joining Coady Institute in this initiative are long-standing partners with strong experience in advancing gender equality and community change. They include:

  • Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) in India;
  • Organization for Women in Self Employment (WISE) in Ethiopia;
  • Gender Training Institute (GTI) of the Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP);
  • Christian Commission for Development (CCDB) in Bangladesh; and
  • Centre Haïtien du Leadership et de l’Excellence (CLE) in Haiti.

Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh is very much excited being part of the ENGAGE project, and at the same time we are hopeful to bring some significant changes in the lives of women through working together with Coady in the next five years,” Imran Kibria, Head, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation with Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh, said.

ENGAGE! will apply an asset-based, citizen-led development (ABCD) approach to promote gender-equitable change. This approach ensures that local communities, particularly women, exercise ownership and control over social and economic development initiatives that respond to their realities and priorities.

  • Partners and their networks will engage a cohort of nearly 1,500 women and their allies in ENGAGE!, including many from marginalized groups such as ethnic minorities and persons living with disabilities.
  • ENGAGE! will reach an estimated 13,810 female and 5,600 male (19,410 total) beneficiaries directly, and a further 253,180 beneficiaries indirectly.

To schedule an interview:

Cindy MacKenzie
Manager, Communications and Marketing
St. Francis Xavier University

Brian Lazzuri
Manager Marketing and Communications
Coady Institute

About St. Francis Xavier University (StFX)

One of Canada’s oldest and most prestigious universities, St. Francis Xavier is consistently ranked one of the best undergraduate universities in Canada. Here, the focus is on delivering what so many of Canada’s top students want: a high quality education while supporting the personal development of every student, making community and social involvement a large part of the learning experience. StFX exceeds the needs of its students through outstanding teaching, exceptional hands-on research experience, the very best in residential living, and unique opportunities to make a contribution to communities at home and abroad.

About StFX’s Coady Institute

Established in 1959, Coady Institute is committed to accompanying generations of global leaders skilled in the application of citizen-led, asset-based, and community-driven leadership for economic and social change. Located in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People, on the campus of St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia. Coady Institute includes a network of leaders in 130 countries globally.