Fiona Mavhinga

Director of CAMA Development, Lawyer and Founder of Camfed’s CAMA alumnae network

Fiona Mavhinga was one of the first young women who completed her education with Camfed’s support. Today, Fiona is a lawyer and leads on the strategic development of the Camfed Association (CAMA), a powerful pan-African network of educated young women leaders and philanthropists, whose membership grew to 120,000 in 2017. Having experienced first-hand the vulnerability even of those young women who manage to complete secondary school – with no resources, and no employment opportunities available in rural areas - Fiona became a key founder of the CAMA network. Organised into elected committees from district to national level, CAMA has a robust mechanism offering for training and leadership opportunities to young school leavers, and cascading knowledge. Connected through mobile technology, young women overcome rural isolation, help build each other’s lives, and use their experience and expertise to support many more vulnerable children to stay in school, learn and succeed. CAMA now provides the backbone of the programmes through which Camfed is bringing about systemic change. As Director of CAMA Development, Fiona is leading on ways to grow and replicate this powerful model. Fiona has spoken at numerous international platforms, notably at a policy roundtable and plenary session at the 2016 Girls’ Education Forum hosted by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), and a 2015 roundtable on the Let Girls Learn initiative with First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama, and the Secretary of State for International Development of the UK. Fiona was also invited to speak in Dublin at the One Young World Summit 2014 Education Plenary Session. She joined two fellow CAMA leaders to stand with Malala Yousafzai when world leaders committed to the Sustainable Development Goals at the United Nations in September 2015.