Jamila Mayanja

2015 Fellowship Alumna, Uganda

Empowering Women and Girls: My Leadership Journey

Jamila Mayanja is a 2015 Fellowship Alumna and the winner of the 2023 Leadership Impact Award. Jamila is a social entrepreneur and educator who empowers women and girls to transform their lives and communities.  In this piece, she reflects on her experience since being named the LIA winner.  Learn more about Jamila and her work.

Upon returning home from the 2023 Mandela Washington Fellowship Summit, Jamila’s team surprised her with flowers and a cake for winning the 2023 Leadership Impact Award.

On 9th August 2023, I visited my former secondary school with the former U.S. Mission Uganda Ambassador and the Embassy Team where I shared about my work and winning the 2023 Leadership Impact Award.

I have been invited to speak at the U.S. Embassy Explorer Bus at the American Center to speak about the impact of the Mandela Washington Fellowship and other exchange opportunities to the youth.

I organized a youth festival for different youth villages with 2022 Fellowship Alumnus Wakib Bunya. Smart Girls Uganda’s “Girls with Tools” program was exhibited to inspire attending youth to join, and I was on two panel discussions to talk about girls empowerment and innovation.

In September, we had a visit from YALI Regional Leadership Center Regional Alumni Coordinator for Africa, Melaney Monreal Starling at the U.S. Mission Kampala, and Smart Girls Uganda participants presented to her what we do at Smart Girls Uganda.

Seventy participants graduated at our Girls in Tech graduation in October.

The Mandela Washington Fellowship is a program of the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and administered by IREX.  The views expressed in this piece are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Government.