ANTIGONISH: In a recent presentation at the Coady family homestead in Margaree, the annual Coady Family Global Bursary was presented to Gambian participant of the diploma in development leadership program, Jawneh Nfamara.
“First of all, I’m pleased, honored and extremely humbled to receive the Coady Family Global Bursary. It is indeed a very auspicious moment for me,” Nfamara told The Reporter. “I would therefore like to thank Coady International Institute for selecting me for this award and I really appreciate the Coady family honouring me.”
Nfamara expressed he cannot thank the Coady family enough for receiving this prestigious award.
“I had a long dream of furthering my studies abroad especially in the field of community development since we don’t have such an institution like Coady,” he said. “But I never had the opportunity until this year thanks to the generous support of the Coady family through Coady International Institute.”
Nfamara is the executive director and co-founder of Beakanyang, a not-for-profit, non-government organization in Gambia that promotes human rights, good governance and livelihood in rural areas.
“Every year I travel to almost every part of The Gambia teaching young people and women about their rights, supporting women farmers in rural areas and bringing their concerns and development challenges to the duty bearers in the capital city.”
Beakanyang’s mission is to enhance the quality of life for young people and women in Gambia and to promote their effective participation in decision-making processes, to ensure every human being living in the African country enjoys all his or her God given human rights without any restriction.
Nfamara’s extraordinary work as a community leader hasn’t gone unnoticed; the Coady Family Global Bursary is the second award he’s received this year, and it may be the latter of the two.
“In July, at the UN Headquarters in New York, I was awarded as a Human Rights Hero by Youth for Human Rights International,” he said. “To have a second award here in Canada is very inspiring for me.”
Coady Institute’s flagship 20-week course, diploma in development leadership is designed for community development leaders who are passionate about creating positive change in their communities. Together they learn innovative skills and approaches for leadership in sustainable, citizen-led development.
Jenny MacDonald, marketing coordinator for the Coady International Institute said the bursary was established by the families of the grand-nieces and grand-nephews of Rev. Dr. Moses Coady, in honour of the late Mary Jesse Coady and her husband Leo.
The diploma program strengthens participants’ capacity to confront the complex issues they face and to propose pragmatic strategies for change. Throughout the program participants build and draw upon a critical and reflective social change framework to enhance their leadership competencies and their abilities to motivate and support people in creating a better world for future generations.
“The annual bursary is granted to a deserving community leader to attend the Coady International Institute Diploma Program,” MacDonald said. “This generous support represents the families’ commitment to the vision of Dr. Coady, a vision that continues through the work of thousands of Coady Institute graduates around the world.”
Nfamara has benefited strongly from enrolling in the program and said he is looking forward to using his newly acquired skills and knowledge to contribute positively towards social transformation and deepening accountable governance in The Gambia.
“I will use my time at Coady to equip myself with the necessary skills and tools to become a leading voice in The Gambia’s democratic transition and in building a culture of human rights in the country.”