Gwen Madiba is a human's rights advocate and international award winning speaker who has dedicated her life to empowering women, young girls and the youth around the world.
A designer and former model, she has created spaces where all people can feel appreciated, valued, respected and equal regardless of their social background, race, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion and beliefs.
Gwen Madiba deeply believes that Education should be a fundamental human right. For this reason, she launched an Education Funds for Orphans in Africa (in Gabon and Senegal). In 2010, she co-launched a campaign titled "Replacing guns by pens" in the Democratic Republic of Congo with the NGO Vision Gram International.
In 2010, with the support of Her Excellency the Right Honorable Michaelle Jean, 27th Governor General of Canada and Mr. Jean-Daniel Lafond, she founded the University of Ottawa Black History Month Gala. The successful event which became the Canadian Black History Month Gala recognizes black and non-black people who work with black communities around the world or whom stories and achievements have inspired so many to pursue their own dreams and come together as one. That same year, she was included in the Women's Executive Network of Canada's list of Top 100 Most Powerful Women in the category Future Leader.
In 2011, she was presented by Canada's Revenue Agency as one of ''tomorrow's leader''.
In 2012 she received the CCSR Conference Youth Social Entrepreneur Award at Algonquin College and pursued her humanitarian work in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in Haiti, in Senegal and in Gabon. A part of her work was dedicated to assisting women and children victims of war and participating in efforts to reinsert them in their society.
In 2014 she became of the Ambassador of the Nelson Mandela Legacy and Official Representative of the Honorable Nelson Mandela's family in North America (the Unites States of America and Canada). She delivered a speech on behalf of the Honorable Nelson Mandela's family at City Hall in Ottawa during the inauguration of the Nelson Mandela Square.
In 2017, she successfully launched the ''ONE VOICE'' campaign to raise awareness on violence against women in Ottawa, Canada. In less than 24 hours, over 300 participants had signed up for the local campaign. The campaign brought together children as young as 3 year-old, parents and even grand-parents. That same year, she made history at the International Women's Rights pageant, Mrs. Universe, becoming the first Black Woman to pass the top 20 and land in the top 2. She brought back her crown to her native Gabon and adoptive country, Canada.
In 2019 she traveled to the G7 Women7 in Paris, France, where she delivered a speech at the UNESCO on Indigenous women, peace and security. That same year, she traveled to Windhoek, Namibia to actively participate in discussions on the United Nations' resolution 1325 on women, peace and security at the Focal Point meeting on UNSCR1325.
In 2018, she received the Young Alumnus Award from her ''Alma Mater'', the University of Ottawa where she obtained a Bachelor in Communication and Sociology and a Master’s degree in Sociology.
On November 21, 2019, she received the Order of Ottawa from the City of Ottawa and was included for a second time in 9 years in the Women's Executive Network of Canada's top 100 Most powerful women in the Mercedes Benz Canada emerging leader category.
In 2019, she became the President of the Equal Chance foundation; an organization that advocates for equal opportunities for the black community in Canada while equipping black Canadians with concrete tools to succeed in society. Through Equal Chance, she developed various programs including the food security program "Meals for Hope" and an important program: "It takes a village" for black mothers and pregnant women. Gwen volunteers a great amount of time to support her community.
In 2020, she received the United Way of Eastern Ontario's Community Builder Award - Covid-19 heroes edition for her dedication and work to assist the most vulnerable people during this pandemic.
She is currently working on a Documentary called LEADHER, which will showcase the lives, obstacles and triumphs of phenomenal women in leadership positions around the world.
She is pursuing her advocacy work through Equal Chance and the Education Fund for Orphans in Africa.
Gwen Madiba speaks French, English and Spanish.
Gwen Madiba receives the Order of Ottawa
On Thursday, November 21, 2019, Gwen Madiba received the Order of Ottawa from the City of Ottawa. Mayor Jim Watson presented her with the prestigious Order of Ottawa.
Empowering the Gabonese Youth
Gwen Madiba sat down and exchanged with their Excellencies the Prime Minister of Gabon, The Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Economy as well as the Minister of Women Affairs to discuss an important youth project to encourage the Gabonese Youth to pursue their education while giving them key tools to help them on their journey towards graduating.
Gwen Madiba receives the United Way 2020-Community Builder/COVID-19 Hero Award
On Friday June 19, 2020, Gwen Madiba received a plaque/Award from the United Way of Eastern Ontario for her exceptional volunteer work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Gwen has dedicated countless hours to assisting those who need it most during this pandemic by developing a food security program, a mental health and employment program as well as a special support program for International students.
Gwen Madiba Attends the Focal Points meeting on UN Resolution 1325 in Windhoek, Namibia
On April 9 and 10 2019, Gwen Madiba attended the second focal point meeting on the United Nations Resolution 1325 in Windhoek, Namibia alongside UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, European Ambassador, Mara Marinaki, Parliamentary Secretary Pamela Goldsmith Jones.
Gwen Madiba receives the Young Almunus Award at the University of Ottawa
On Thursday May 3rd 2018, Gwen Madiba received the Young Almunus Award alongside a list of deserving and inspiring award recipients: Mr. Guy Laflamme, Almunus of the Year, Mr. Jean Desgagne who was recognized for his commitment to the University of Ottawa, Mr.Tony Durst who became an Honorary Member of the Alumni Association, Mrs. Sylvie Bigras who received an award for her Community service and the inspiring Mrs. Catherine Cano who received the Meritas Tabaret Award.
Gwen Madiba attends the G7 Reception on Advancing Gender Equality & Women's Empowerment
On April 27th, Gwen Madiba attended the G7 Discussion Panel on Advancing Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment, followed by a reception where she was able to dialogue with women who have accomplished a lot in the field of Women's Rights.
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