Meet Her Excellency, First Lady of Namibia, Madam Monica Geingos, President of the Organization of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD), UNAIDS Special Advocate on Young Women and Adolescent Girls and Member of the Virchow Foundation for Global Health Board of Trustees
Mrs. Monica Geingos, First Lady of Namibia, is a qualified lawyer with extensive experience in the financial and private equity sector. Since March 2015 she serves as First Lady of the Republic of Namibia. Her Excellency holds two legal degrees, B. Juris and LLB, from the University of Namibia. Madame Monica Geingos was awarded with several prestigious prizes, including, “National Honours” for her “outstanding contribution to the socio-economic development of Namibia”, the “Namibian Business Personality of the Year”, “Most Innovative Entrepreneur” and was named as one of “Africa’s Top 100 Economic Leaders” by various global organisations and publications. The First Lady serves as President of the Organization of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD), an advocacy organization where First Ladies of Africa seek to leverage their unique position to advocate for policies making health care accessible and laws to boosting women and youth. To further strengthen her commitment within the global health landscape she is also a UNAIDS Special Advocate for Young Women and Adolescent Girls.
In her newest role as a Member of the Virchow Foundation for Global Health Board of Trustees, Her Excellency, Mrs. Geingos hopes to champion the cause of, and rally partners for, global health issues on the African continent.
From your perspective, why is engagement and awareness raising for global health important?
Achieving equity is one of the most critical components in global health. This highlights the importance of addressing social and environmental determinants and eliminating disparities in health systems. In addition, global health issues exist beyond the confines of a country or health centre, which implies that a complex interplay of factors needs to be considered. They must be approached from multiple angles leading to the need of forming a strong partnership where it is possible to tap into existing expertise.
How are you committed to engaging in global health topics with your current professional role and activities?
Most of my activities have revolved around advocating for global health issues. The fact that I have accepted the position of becoming a Member of the Virchow Foundation for Global Health Board of Trustees demonstrates my dedication to the cause as well as a strategic perspective on the contributions that I can make in my various professional capacities and responsibilities. I intend to continue incorporating and engaging in issues related to global health by channelling various networks in both the public and private sectors.
How do you hope to achieve greater awareness and engagement for global health in your new role at the Virchow Foundation for Global Health? How can the Virchow Prize for Global Health help to increase awareness?
As President of the Organization of African First Ladies for Development, my new role at the Virchow Foundation will allow me to champion the cause of global health on the African continent. I hope to rally African First Ladies and partners around global health issues. I will spread the message and work of the Virchow Foundation for Global Health through my platforms and network.
Meet the Members of the Virchow Foundation for Global Health Board of Trustees: https://virchowprize.org/board-of-trustees/