Making impact and a real-life contribution: Students in Niger win grant for training young Nigerien women in advocacy and digital campaigning

February 21, 2022.  

Students of the Climate and Sustainable Development Actions Club (CSDAC) receive funding by Plan International West and Central Africa for training young Nigerien women in advocacy and digital campaigning

In December 2021, the CSDAC students were awarded another grant by Plan International. The new project plans to build human capacities in advocacy and digital campaigning: Seventeen Nigerien girl-leaders will receive training on how to best disseminate and promote the SDGs on social media channels in French and two local Nigerien languages.

The project was officially launched at the Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey (UAM) in Niger's capital Niamey on February 21, 2022. 
Find the program including speakers here.

Besides several high-ranking guests, ZEF-researcher Wolfram Laube, who has been initiating and leading several Capacity Development initiatives in West Africa since 2008, gave a talk. He thanked the UAM and its rector Dr. Rabani for supporting their students in their involvement beyond academic duties. "CSDAC students show a high degree of responsibility and engagement with regard to strenghtening local communities vis à vis the challenges posed by climate change", Laube said via a zoom link being connected to the in-person audience in Niamey via live stream.

Background: What is the Climate and Sustainable Development Action Club?

The Climate and Sustainable Development Actions Club (CSDAC) was founded in 2018 by ten master students from the ZEF-led Capacity Development project West African Center for Sustainable Rural Transformation. The West African Center for Sustainable Rural Transformation is one of twelveDAAD African Centers of Excellence. ZEF runs two of these DAAD African Excellence Centers, the second one being Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies, which ZEF has been operating since 2008. To finance their extra work, the Climate and Sustainable Development Actions Club members have been engaging in successful fund-raising activities. This has brought them several grants, e.g. two grants by Plan International West and Central Africa (Twitter account: @PlanWestAfrica).

Successful fundraising: Granted grant after grant!

CSDAC members have also applied for and acquired a grant by the CoLab program of the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development. Due to this grant  they were able to develop an app (see youtube video here: WOHEVER) which aims to enhance medical care during pregnancy and thereby reduce child and maternal mortality rates. This app has given the students an enormous visibility. Not only among their social media followers and audiences, but also in Nigerien Media outlets (in this video CSDAC is represented by its co-founder Thierry Odou).

Visibility and social media

Further actions with local communities include awareness-raising campaigns, organized both in the form of on-site actions and workshops, as well as online campaigns. Thus, the students have already mobilized for clean-up actions in the campus’ surroundings and for planting trees in order to curb advancing deserts. During the pandemic, however, the focus has been more on online actions: Students have celebrated the World Water Day, the World Environmental Day, the National Day of Nigerien Women. All actions and videos can be watched on their Facebook page.


Read and watch more on the ZEF blog here.

See also previous news item on ZEF's website here.

Photos by Nyarko Fletcher

Author and contact:

ZEF researcher Aline R. B. Pereira,





Aline Rose Barbosa Pereira

Aline Rose Barbosa Pereira