International Day of the African Child: Achieving SDG 5.3 and SDG16.2


International Day of the African Child: Achieving SDG 5.3 and SDG16.2


International Day of the African Child: Achieving SDG 5.3 and SDG16.2

This event is sponsored by the Legal Vice Presidency, the Empowering Women by Balancing the Law Initiative, and the GFLJD FGM/C Legal Working Group with the support of the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices (IAC), the U.S End FGM/C Network, the End FGM European Network, the Global Media Campaign to End FGM, World Vision Philanthropy and Women Voices Now.  This event is bringing together relevant experts and stakeholders to discuss the SDG5.3 and SDG 16.2 achievement's prospects and challenges, the importance of eliminating all harmful traditional practices to secure children's rights and protect them from abuse, violence, and torture. This event will also present the updated Compendium of National and International Legal Frameworks on Child Marriage and the Legal Training Manuals on FGM developed in Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Kenya, Uganda, Senegal, and Nigeria.  Finally, this event will screen and debate around the film "Messania's Story" on the correlation between child marriage and FGM as well as the importance of initiatives and projects' activities promoting the legal framework for SDG5.3 and SDG16.2.


9:00 Welcoming Words

  • Hana Brixi
    Global Gender Director
    World Bank

9:10 Presentation of the Compendium of National and International Legal Frameworks on Child Marriage 2nd Edition

  • Una Saerun Johannsdottir
    World Bank

9:20 Presentation of the Legal Training Manuals on FGM developed in Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Kenya, Uganda, Senegal, and Nigeria

  • Edith Ruguru Mwenda
    Senior Counsel
    World Bank

9:40 Panel Discussion on Achieving SDG 5.3 and SDG16.2

  • Isma Benboulerbah
    Programmes Coordinator
    End FGM European Network

  • Assi Napoe
    General Secretary
    Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices

  • Djessou Kouyate
    Executive Director
    U.S IAC & Member, U.S End FGM/C Network

  • Maggie O'Kane
    Executive Director
    Global Media Campaign to End FGM 

Moderator: Isabella Micali Drossos, Senior Counsel, World Bank

11:00 Film Screening of Messaina's Story and Debate around the Film

  • Laki Karavias
    Film Director & Screen Writer

  • Jacqueline Ogega
    Director of Gender and Social Inclusion
    World Vision Philanthropya

Moderator: Lou M.C Granier, Gender Specialist Consultant, World Bank

Hana Brixi

Global Director for Gender, World Bank

As Global Director for Gender, Hana Brixi leads a global effort to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment. She sets the overall direction for the World Bank Group’s Gender knowledge agenda, drives Bank-wide efforts for results in closing gender gaps, and fosters partnerships with public and private sector stakeholders toward innovations at scale. 

In her career, she has contributed to advances in human development, public finance, and governance. As Manager of the Human Capital Project, she led a global effort to protect and invest in people with an emphasis on girls and women empowerment. Hana has published articles in professional journals and written several books on economic development, including Trust, Voice and Incentives on service delivery and Government at Risk on fiscal management. 

Francesca Daverio

Head of Office
Legal Vice Presidency
World Bank

Francesca Daverio is Head of Office, Office of the Senior Vice President and Group General Counsel at the World Bank’s Legal Vice Presidency.  She is a specialist in international and comparative law, with a particular focus on gender, justice, and technology.  Additionally, Ms. Daverio currently serves as the Legal Vice Presidency’s Diversity and Inclusion representative.

Prior to taking up her current assignments, Ms. Daverio worked with the Legal Operations Policy Practice Group (LEGOP) of the Legal Vice Presidency, where she provided advisory services on matters pertaining to access to information, public procurement, and World Bank operational policies.  Outside of the Legal Vice Presidency, Ms. Daverio had served for several years as legal advisor on insolvency, debtor and creditor rights, and governance of state owned enterprises.  Prior to joining the World Bank, Ms. Daverio had worked for a law firm specializing in international insolvency and corporate law.  Ms. Daverio obtained her PhD in Law of Business and Commerce from Bocconi University and her JD from the University of Milan, Italy.  She is admitted to practice law in Italy.

Isabella Micali Drossos

Senior Counsel
Legal Vice Presidency
World Bank

Isabella Micali Drossos is a French and Brazilian lawyer. She joined the Bank in 1999 and has worked since then as an operational lawyer in Africa, Latin America and the Pacific Region. She has a passion for issues related to gender-based violence (in particular Female Genital Mutilation and Domestic Violence) and collective happiness and well-being in development. She holds degrees in law and in economics from the University of Paris, an LLM from the London School of Economics and a PhD in international public law from the University Pantheon-Sorbonne.

Una Johannsdottir

Counsel, World Bank

Una Johannsdottir is the project manager for the Empowering Women by Balancing the Law initiative at the World Bank. She is a lawyer from Iceland and holds a master’s degree in international law, LLM degree in European Law from Stockholm University and a postgraduate diploma from King´s College London. Una is seconded to the World Bank from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iceland where she has worked as a diplomat most recently in the Embassy of Iceland in Washington DC. Prior to joining the Foreign Service Una practiced law in Stockholm and Brussels focusing on EU competition law and internal market legislation 

Edith Mwenda

Senior Counsel, World Bank

Edith Ruguru Mwenda is a Senior Counsel at the World Bank, she joined the World Bank in 2001 and has worked as an operational lawyer in Africa and in the Caribbean. She has been for many years the Gender Advisor for the Legal Department and the Gender Group at the World Bank and has a passion for Gender Based Violence related issues, including GBV and development, codes of conduct to prevent GBV as well as the operationalization of GBV issues in World Bank operations. 

Edith holds a LMB from the university of Nairobi, a LMM in Banking and finance from the University of London (Queen Mary College) and a LMM in International Environmental Law from the George Washington University. She is an advocate of the High Court of Kenya.

Isma Benboulerbah

Programmes Coordinator, End FGM European Network

Isma Benboulerbah is the Coordinator of Programmes at End FGM EU. She is coordinating and implementing the programmes of the Network. As Coordinator of Programmes at the End FGM European Network, Isma is in charge of the community development and works with FGM-affected communities through the Ambassadors and Youth Programmes to end violence against women and girls.  

Previously, Isma worked with End FGM EU’s Members Equilibres & Populations, on the project “Building bridges between Europe and Africa to end FGM” and was also elected board member and acted as Secretary- General of the French network against FGM Excision Parlons-en!  

Isma is a strong and passionate feminist activist and has been working for years on programs focusing on fighting sexual and gender-based violence and SRHR. After several years of professional experience in France, West Africa and with women from the Arab-Muslim diaspora and FGM-affected communities in Europe, Isma has built up important knowledge on sexual and reproductive rights, gender based violence, harmful traditional practices around the bodies of girls and women, and particularly on Female Genital Mutilation.  

Isma holds a Bachelor in applied foreign language from the University of Lyon III which she completed in Lebanon with Arab studies and geopolitical studies in the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik. She also holds a Master in International Relations, from the University of Lyon III and a Master in International Cooperation and NGO’s from University of Paris 13.  

Assibi Napoe

Secretary General, Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices

Activist in Human and Trade Union Rights, specialist in Education and Gender, Ms. Assibi NAPOE founded and chairs the Togolese League for Women's Rights (LTDF) since 1994. As such, she was a Member of the National Commission for Human Rights in TOGO (CNDH) from 1998 to 2004. 

In 2014, she was elected World Secretary General of the Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children (IAC) which she joined in 1996. She is also President of the IAC’s National Committee in Togo. 

She also advocates, nationally, regionally and internationally for the effective enjoyment of Women's Rights. She has made the fight against FGM and other practices that discriminate against women and girls her priority. 

A teacher and trade union activist, Ms. NAPOE served on the World Executive Board of Education International (EI) from 1995 to 2003 before taking over the management of the EI Bureau for the Africa region as "Principal Regional Coordinator" of 2004 until his retirement in 2020. 

For her commitments, the French Republic awarded her the "Cross of Knight of the National Order of the Legion of Honor" in 1999.

Maggie O'Kane

Executive Director, Global Media Campaign to End FGM

Maggie O'Kane,  is the co-founder of the Global Media Campaign to End FGM and Gender Based Violence. The campaign has been changing the media agenda for women across African for almost a decade,  by supporting frontline female community activists to take preventative action on women's rights by making FGM and GBV a local media priority.   GMC's work from FGM,  fistula,  through maternal mortality to domestic violence funds women activists directly to take control of the often private local media agenda by providing them funding through Direct Action Media Grants. GMC's work on FGM and GBV has been described by the World Bank as cheap, efficient and highly effective.   28TooMany, an organisation that research FGM globally has described GMC's work as  "transformational." O"Kane is a former award winning correspondent with the Guardian,  an Emmy award-winning TV producer and currently chairs the board of the European Press Prize.

Djessou Kouyate

Executive Director, Inter-African Committee on Traditional Practices -US 

Djessou Kouyate is the Executive director of the U.S. wing of the Inter-African Committee created in 1984 in Dakar. The guiding principle of IAC-USA is education in order to bring a positive change of attitude and capacity building of affected communities. 

She has a Bachelor degree from University of Maryland University College, and Certification of Project Management from Georgetown University.  

She is an Advocate for women and children’ rights, End Female Genital Mutilation, and Child Mariage.  

She is also the Co-founder of « Vacances Sans Excision » (Summer without Female Genital Mutilation -FGM)” an annually activity to raise awareness and knowledge of FGM through Summer Camp so that both educators and campers can actively be involved in the prevention of FGM. She has done many public speaking to raise awareness on FGM/C in the United States. 

In 2012 she coordinated, managed, and delivered a successful high level event “Bridge between USA and Africa”. Among the esteemed guests were the first ladies from Burkina Faso and the Niger, dignitaries from the State Department, USAID, World Bank, UN, religious and community leaders, and the diaspora communities. 

Djessou has always been involved with her father, H.E. Dr. Morissanda Kouyate, recently appointed as Minister of Foreign Affairs in Guinea, a laureate of the United Nations Nelson Mandela Prize to End FGM in her native country Guinea and around the world.

Laki Karavias


Laki Karavias is a Greek-American filmmaker, currently dividing his time between Europe and the Pacific Northwest. 

Because much of his childhood and post graduate work has been abroad, he is drawn to characters, settings, and experiences that take viewers beyond American boundaries and into the lives of some of the extraordinary people he has met during his travels. 

After studying screenwriting and directing at the National Film and Television School (UK) and the Prague Film School, Laki began crafting on paper the narratives he’d hope to see one day on the big screen—stories mixing gravitas and whimsy, while maintaining a human core. 

Laki's work has been featured on Upworthy, Vox, Sirius XM, Ad Week, The Kelly Clarkson Show and Christianity Today and his documentary and narrative films have screened at and won awards at Oscar, BAFTA and Canadian Screen Qualifying festivals, including the Oscar qualifying Grand Prize for Documentary Short at Flicker's Rhode Island International Film Festival. 

When not making films, Laki looks for opportunities to pursue his passion for adolescent film education, particularly for youth living in underserved communities and economically fragile contexts both locally and abroad.

Jacqueline Ogega

Dr. Jacqueline Ogega is the Director of Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) at World Vision US, where she leads a team of technical experts in GESI integration. Dr. Ogega has over 18 years of experience in international development and peacebuilding, focusing on gender equality, social inclusion, child protection and the empowerment of women and girls. She has worked with various organizations including Creative Associates International, PCI, World Learning and Catholic Relief Services. Her work has involved providing strategic GESI integration in thought leadership, new business development, program quality assurance and impact. Dr. Ogega earned her PhD. in peace and conflict studies from the university of Bradford in the UK and holds an M.A in gender and development studies, and a B.A in education. A survivor of gender-based violence, she believes in individual agency, societal resilience and equity of systems as essential and achievable pathways to lasting, transformative change.

Lou M.C Granier

International Consultant and Gender Specialist

Lou M. C. Granier is a French International Consultant in Development specialized in Gender. She holds a master's degree in Development Management from the London School of Economics, and a joint degree from Queen Mary University of London in Economics and Politics. She then specialized in Gender programming and GBV at the George Washington University. She is specifically dedicated to work toward the eradication of FGM/C and has been working with the World Bank, NGOs, and the National Committee to Combat Harmful Practices in Guinea Bissau while developing operational work in Mali and in Guinea. She is also a member of the Global Forum on Law, Justice and Development’s FGM/C Legal Working Group.#EndFGM #SDG5.3 


Event Type: Webinar

Date: Thursday June 16, 2022

Time: 09:00 - 12:00 PM ET

Venue/Location: Virtual

Working Group: FGM