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 Celebrating International Women’s Day with WoWE

As we enter the month of March, the global spotlight shines brightly on the extraordinary contributions of women. This month, we are reflecting on the ongoing journey towards gender equality in the investment industry and reaffirming our dedication to creating pathways to accelerate capital to diverse teams and strategies.

In celebration of International Women’s Day, Women of the World Endowment invites you to join us in sharing a personal tribute to the remarkable women who have paved the way for us to become agents of change – the foremothers who inspire us, the mentors who guide us, and the advocates who champion our success. Our colleague, Safo Ngunga, shares her poignant tribute to her grandmother below. 

For this year’s International Women’s Day, I celebrate my grandmother Salome Safo Galgalo. She was born in 1926 in the rural parts of Kenya to the Borana Nomadic ethnic group that migrated from Ethiopia. As nomads, they would seasonally migrate in search of greener pastures which resulted in a lack of schooling for Salome. As an adventurous young girl, she sought a better life and was determined to make a name for herself. At 13, she packed her bags and hitched a ride across the country to start farming where she got married and had her first of eight children at 15 years old. Education was her highest priority. She taught herself how to read and write and worked tirelessly to fund all her children through school and a number through university. 

She was a strong believer in women. In the 1960’s, she became the leader of a group known as “Maendeleo ya Wanawake” directly translating to “development group for women” where she taught women how to bake and weave baskets in order to create an income for themselves in the light of Kenya’s new independence. She went on to become the local school’s treasurer and leader of the Mothers’ Union church group. She inspired and changed the lives of many women including myself. She taught me that one single decision she made at thirteen resulted in the betterment of many generations to come. I am because she chose. It is an honour to carry her name. 


Safo Galgalo in the 1950’s 


Safo seated on the far right at her daughter’s wedding in 1972

My advice to younger women is to be open-minded. Take time to learn about the world, different cultures and different people. It will challenge your thinking and view of the world. Read a lot of inspirational books to learn from those who have experienced the world before you. Take risks, believe in yourself no matter what the world tells you, and finally always remember “to each adversity there is an equal and opposite opportunity.” How you perceive your adversity is all that matters. 

Salome Safo Ngunga, Senior Analyst at WoWE

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