In sub-Saharan Africa, only 29% of STEM researchers (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) are female (UN Women Statistics). Faced with complex developmental challenges, southern Africa needs more scientific researchers. There is huge potential to develop a vibrant and diverse research community within the region to tackle these challenges head-on by encouraging women in the sciences.
Women remain hugely under-represented in southern Africa's STEM sector. On top of this, billions of dollars are spent annually on drafting foreign experts into the continent, which undercuts the potential of a thriving and inclusive scientific research community. Our work focuses on providing opportunities for people from southern Africa to develop high level expertise in key fields, with 96% of our alumni remaining on the African continent developing their chosen sector.
In a region where access to postgraduate education is often limited, providing scholarships to those that show enormous potential but are otherwise disadvantaged will create a more diverse research community with fresh perspectives. We are passionate about the role of women's leadership in tackling the complex development challenges southern Africa faces. From HIV/AIDs research to environmental conservation, women must be involved in creating and implementing solutions at all levels.
Our scholars go on to be leaders within their fields in southern Africa. Canon Collins alumna Grace (an eye doctor in Zambia) treats over 1,000 patients and trains up to 50 new doctors a year. Ester (an immunologist from Mozambique) established a laboratory for infectious diseases to train future scientists and facilitate research on diseases such as HIV and malaria after her scholarship. Canon Collins wants to support more scholars in their mission to create a sustainable impact in the region.