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Balkissa Harouna Brah

Program Advisor - Niger

Balkissa leads our program implementation in Niger, managing both conceptual and operational responsibilities. Balkissa contributes to our strategic thinking and planning, and provides individualized support and mentoring to our grantees in Niger.

Passionate about gender equality, sexual reproductive health, and women and girls’ empowerment, Balkissa is an international development specialist with over 18 years’ experience in diverse sectors. She was part of the 2018 Cohort of The Sahel Leadership Program (PLS), an Oasis Initiative program to create a critical mass of emerging leaders dedicated to girls’ and women’s empowerment to improve family wellbeing across francophone Africa.

Balkissa has worked with the Girls First Fund since our launch in 2019. Prior to this, she served as Coordinator of the Sarraounia Project, a successful girls’ education pilot project in Niger. She has conducted multiple consultancies for international development agencies, INGOs, and private research firms, with a particular focus on technical support and capacity building missions for projects/programs promoting women’s rights to health and education.

In September 2021, Balkissa became the first francophone from West Africa to join the board of Urgent Action Fund Africa ( UAF-Africa ), a renowned feminist, pan-African, rapid response fund committed to transforming power relations through resourcing African feminists and women human rights defenders.

Balkissa holds a Master’s degree in International Management from Ecole des Hautes Commerciales (HEC), Montreal. In 2020, she graduated from the International Graduate Institute of Geneva with a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Gender and Development.