Training Leaders for Gender Equity in Nigeria


Rise Up


a young Rise Up leader holding a Rise Up "dignity pack"

In 2020, PHI’s Rise Up program won major policy changes in Nigeria that banned child marriage in Agege and Mushin communities, provided girls with greater access to education, and protected millions of women and girls from domestic violence.

4.5M women and girls protected from domestic violence

1M children protected from abuse in schools

224K girls with greater access to education

200K girls protected from child marriage

PHI’s Rise Up program invests in visionary leaders, local organizations, and innovative solutions to advance social justice and improve education, equity, and opportunity for girls and women around the world. In 2020, as a result of policy changes advocated by organizations supported by Rise Up, more than 10 million people globally stand to benefit from improved laws and policies to protect girls, young women, children and adults. 

In Nigeria, with training, funding, and support from Rise Up, Benjamin Yunana Maigari and his organization, Africa Media Development Foundation, expanded access to education for 224,000 girls in Kaduna State. Benjamin developed a policy for implementing free and compulsory secondary school for girls in Kaduna, partnered with girl leaders to ensure the policy met their needs, and worked with parents, teachers, media, and religious leaders to advocate for the policy. In September 2020, the Commissioner for the Ministry of Education formally approved the policy.

Before my Rise Up training, I didn’t know that I needed to have such concrete goals and milestones to work towards. Now I can go to any government official and tell them exactly what I want, how I think it can be achieved, and how long it is expected to take. To me, girls’ education is the foundation for nation-building, and to have played a part in that is my greatest accomplishment.

Rise Up Leader Benjamin Yunana Maigari

Advocacy by Nigerian leaders and groups supported by Rise Up also resulted in:

  • Protections for up to 4.5 million women and girls from domestic violence through a new policy in Lagos State guaranteeing the speedy hearing of domestic violence cases.
  • Protecting over 1 million school children from abuse by ensuring Lagos schools effectively implement the state’s Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy
  • Protections for over 200,000 young women and girls through a ban on child marriage in Agege and Mushin communities.

Learn more about Rise Up’s work in Nigeria.

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