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This year-long fellowship is designed to advance the leadership skills of talented African women who are passionate about gender equity in global health systems. The fellowship includes a comprehensive curriculum in global health policy, leadership, knowledge translation and mentorship skills delivered by experts through innovative lectures, case studies, role plays, workshops, discussion forums and reflective exercises, all while supported by an amazing group of mentors.

Women in Global Health Leadership Fellowship

“Women hold around 70% of health worker jobs globally, over 80% of nursing and over 90% of midwifery roles, deliver the majority of unpaid care and domestic work in families and communities, and make the majority of health purchasing and usage decisions. Women lead the delivery of health to 5 billion people and contribute an estimated US$ 3 trillion annually to global health, half in the form of unpaid work. Yet women hold only 25% of leadership roles in health.”

– The State of Women and Leadership in Global Health, Policy Report, Women in Global Health Series, March 2023.


There is a pressing need to improve the pipeline of women leaders working in public and global health. We believe there is no shortage of women leaders. What is missing, are safe spaces where women can share their experiences with other like-minded peers while being exposed to gender transformative leadership, training tools and role models that can help them push forward more equitable health policies and practices.

This program was created in collaboration between the University of Toronto Dalla Lana School of Public Health (Canada), the Moi University School of Public Health (Kenya) and the University of Cape Town School of Public Health (South Africa), in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation.

2023/24 Fellows

To learn more about our current fellows, scroll down and click on “Our 2023/24 Fellows.”

2024/25 Cohort – Applications are now open!

Detailed program information and applicant criteria can be found below in “About the Fellowship.” The application deadline has been extended to June 28, 2024.


This year-long fellowship is designed to advance the leadership skills of talented African women who are passionate about gender equity in global health systems.


Throughout the program, participants can expect to gain knowledge and skills in the following competencies:

• Gender Equity and Intersectional Analysis: The ability to apply an intersectional and/or gender equity lens to health systems and/or health systems research.

• Global Health Policy and Advocacy: The ability to work around policy development, communication, cohesion, and advocacy to address the political environment and organizational culture of health institutions.

• Leadership: The ability to create a vision which empowers others, fosters collaboration, lead, guide decision-making and support diverse team members, to recognize and challenge gender inequity within their organization.

• Mentorship: The ability to develop and realize their leadership potential, their skillset, recognize opportunities for change, and optimize institutional resources to promote gender equity through their work.

Fellowship Phases

The fellowship lasts 12 months. Programming for the fellowship will consist of three phases.

Phase Activities

·         Information package (with information for in-person sessions)

·         Pre-survey to gage knowledge, skills, needs and expectations.

Phase 1


·         Online learning sessions on global health, gender equity, policy and knowledge translation

·         Individual and group work, readings, reflexive exercises

·         Guest speakers

Phase 2



·         Intensive one-week leadership academy with sessions on global health, equity and leadership

·         Mentor matching and mentor training

·        High profile guest speakers and networking opportunities

Phase 3


·         One-on-one mentorship sessions and training

·         Development and presentation of a leadership project

·         Exit interviews and recommendations for next fellowship cohort

Post Fellowship


·         Invitation to participate in alumni network and/or to become an advisor to future cohorts

Benefits of the Fellowship Journey

Aside from a curriculum in global health policy, gender equity and leadership, this hybrid fellowship journey includes:

• Training and workshops delivered by experts

• Personalized mentorship

• Guidance in the design of a leadership project

• Fully funded one week in-person leadership academy (including transportation, accommodation, and meals)

• Financial stipend*

Leadership Academy*

The leadership academy is set to take place in 2025 in Nairobi, Kenya. All participants in the program will be expected to attend. Air fare, transportation, accommodations and meals will be provided.

Financial Support*

This fellowship will provide participants with a living and family support stipend to cover lost wages, child or elder care, or other expenses to support their full participation in the program.

Who is this fellowship for

The Women in Global Health Leadership Fellowship is aimed at persons who:

• Identify as a woman

• Are early career-mid career (5 – 15 years of experience in local, regional or global health work)

• Have post-grad education in Public Health, Health Sciences, Health Policy and/or related fields (MA or PhD)

• Work in a role that focuses on public health policy, practice, teaching and/or research

• Demonstrate leadership qualities through schooling, work or community service

• Reside and work in Kenya or South Africa

• Are an African national

• Possess fluency in English

• Are able to attend a one-week (5-7 Days) leadership academy in 2025 in Nairobi, Kenya.

• Have support of their employer to be part of the program


The Women in Global Health Leadership Fellowship was developed by a group of academics committed to improving the skill set, knowledge and experiences of talented early and mid-career women. The working group members are:

Moi University (Kenya) – School of Public Health

Faith Yego

Senior Lecturer at the Dept. of Health Policy Mgt and Human Nutrition

University of Cape Town (South Africa) – School of Public Health 

Tracey Naledi

Deputy Dean: Social Accountability and Health Systems, Faculty of Health Sciences

Maylene Shung King

Associate Professor, Health Policy and Systems Division, School of Public Health

University of Toronto (Canada) – Dalla Lana School of Public Health

Kamla Ross

Erica Di Ruggiero

Associate Professor and Director for the Centre for Global Heath

Ophelia Michaelides

Manager, Centre for Global Health

Kamla Ross McGregor

Project Coordinator, Women in Global Health Leadership Fellowship, Center for Global Health


The 2023/24 co-hort includes six women from Kenya and six from South Africa, all highly talented, motivated and committed to improving health inequities in their communities. Below are their profiles.


Anjellah Jumah, BSc. in Public Health

Anjellah is a Program Coordinator for several projects within the Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (MNCH) Innovations team at AMPATH (Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare) in Western Kenya. She has experience in health research and health care along with training in project management, monitoring and evaluation.

Anjellah has collaborated in evaluating and scaling up the Chamas for Change program, which integrates microfinance, health education and social education. This project has immensely contributed to improving health care in Western Kenya through improving access and utilization of MNCH services by pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.

Anjellah is passionate about contributing towards the elimination of preventable maternal and infant mortality in Africa and is working towards writing grants and scientific writing for academic journals. She enjoys swimming, planning events and executing landscaping projects.

Anne Miatu, Bsc. in Nursing

Anne is a Nursing educator at the Kenya Medical Training College with over 6 years of experience in both clinical practice and nursing education. She is currently undertaking Msc. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at JKUAT in Kenya.

Previously, Anne worked for 4 years in the Public Health space as a research assistant at the Kenya Medical Research Institute and supported performance management functions at the National Ministry of Health Kenya.

Anne appreciates how public health and nursing intersect in addressing healthcare challenges in Kenya. In pursuing this integration, Anne is passionate about leading and collaborating on research projects that focus on eliminating barriers to primary health care.

Dr Grace Ikahu 

Grace is a medical doctor and public health specialist with over a decade of progressive experience in healthcare management at clinical, management and policy levels. Her work has covered a broad spectrum of assignments in healthcare in health policy, global health diplomacy, health systems strengthening and disease intervention areas at both national and international levels. She has held several positions in the Ministry of Health in Kenya and has worked with international organizations in the implementation of health programs and enhancing development cooperation between governments, donors and non-state actors.

Through the WGHLF she hopes to better contribute to equitable health and leadership by advocating for gender responsive health policies.

In her spare time, Dr. Ikahu enjoys nature and spends time with family.

Dr. Hermes Gichane

Hermes is a medical doctor who is the Program Manager for the Adolescents and Young People’s HIV Prevention Program at the National AIDS and STI Control Program in Kenya. She has developed program guidance documents, improved service quality, and mobilized resources for a multimillion-dollar initiative. With expertise in policy development, program management, and clinical work across various health areas, she is dedicated to improving health systems for all.

Dr. Hermes looks forward to learning more about gender analysis, mentorship, advocacy and knowledge translation through the WGHLF fellowship.

In addition to her professional commitments, she leads Kaizen Femme Investments, a women’s investment group. She values family time and networking.

Sheillah Simiyu, PhD. in Public and Development Management

Sheillah is a Research Scientist at the African Population and Health Research Center in Nairobi, Kenya. Her academic background includes environmental studies, community development and public health. Sheillah leads and collaborates in research studies focussing on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) and the link to public health.

She is passionate about the effects of inadequate WASH, and the resultant impact on global health, such as the recent COVID-19 pandemic. She therefore hopes to work closely with decision makers in identifying and implementing relevant solutions to global health challenges.

In her spare time, she enjoys hiking and exploring new places.

Rachel Ngugi, MPH.

Rachel works a Senior Nursing Officer for the County Government of Makueni in Kenya. She also works as an external lecturer for the Kenya Medical Training College.

Previously, she was a nurse and a lecturer at The Presbyterian University of East Africa and a Project Officer for The Global Fund TB program.

Rachel is passionate about gender equity and wants to improve the lives of adolescent girls to help them achieve a high standard of physical, mental and reproductive health.

In her spare time, she enjoys travelling and spending time with her family.


South Africa

Nonhlanhla (Anda) Nkosi, MBA.

Nonhlanhla is the Chief Director-Strategy in the Department of Health and Wellness in the Western Cape, South Africa. She is a trained accountant with 15 years’ experience in the public service, mostly in finance and strategy.

In her spare time, she is involved with various international faith-based organizations that focus on women empowerment and anti-gender-based violence programmes.

Anda is interested in establishing connections and networking with global women leaders in healthcare to share experiences and strategies to address health inequities which impede efforts to achieve Universal Health Coverage.

Charlyn Goliath, MA. in Occupational Therapy.

Charlyn is the CEO of a public psychiatric hospital in the Western Cape, South Africa. Some of her career highlights include establishing the Interprofessional Teaching and Learning platform at Stellenbosch University; developing strategies for re-organsing Primary Health Care in the Cape Metro; and strengthening innovation as a key driver in the public health sector.

Charlyn also has experience working in the non-profit and academic sector. During this period, her work in health systems and services research grew her interest in global health.

Charlyn is excited about being part of a great network of thought leaders and looks forward to meeting others to learn, network and mentor on issues of global health.

Khanyisa Jacobs, BA. in Advanced Midwifery.

Khanyisa is a Facility Manager in the Khayelitsha Health Services District in Cape Town, South Africa. She is skilled in project management, leadership, innovation, and transformation.

Her personal experience in becoming a mother taught her valuable lessons she has carried forward in her work with pregnant women. To this end, Ms. Jacobs has piloted a Patient Centered Maternity Care Code Project in three Maternity Units of Khayelitsha. The code addresses UBUNTU, a spirit of humanity amongst women, with the aim of improving quality care in all midwifery-led units.

Her ultimate goal is to ensure that all women receive the maternal care they deserve despite their income or background.

Dr. Nontuthuko Khumalo

Nontuthuko is a medical doctor who works as a Manager of Medical Services at a central hospital in the Department of Health and Wellness, Western Cape South Africa. Dr Khumalo also holds a postgraduate diploma in HIV Management.

Dr Khumalo has navigated the private and public healthcare space with the goal of improving quality of care for the patients. With a keen interest in policy implementation and innovation, her goal of quality healthcare for all has become her biggest motivator.

Through the WGLHF fellowship, Dr Khumalo hopes to further improve her leadership and global health skill set.

In her spare time, she likes to cook, spend time with family and travel.

Tumelo Assegaai, PhD. in Public Health

Tumelo is a lecturer in the School of Public Health at the University of Cape Town (UCT) in South Africa. Her interests are in advancing health systems through teaching and research and improving the performance of community health worker programmes.

Tumelo has also held roles as a Technical Advisor at the Health System Trust and Researcher at the University of the Western Cape and UCT.

Her conference presentations and publications are in the areas of community health worker programmes and community-based strategies for prevention of non-communicable diseases.

She is passionate about women economic and social development with particular interest in getting young girls from disadvantaged backgrounds into tertiary education.

She loves the outdoors and exploring food across cultures.


Nonkululeko Mtolo, BSc. in Audiology

Nonkululeko is a practicing Audiologist and Coordinator of Audiology Services in the Garden Route and Central Karoo districts in Western Cape, South Africa. She has a passion for rural health in the public sector and hopes to facilitate advocacy and awareness for disabilities that are not immediately apparent.

As part of her role, she offers training to colleagues on prevention, service promotion and direct consultation with clients for their hearing care needs.

She hopes to improve access to early identification of hearing loss in young children in the districts and further her education with a focus on disability studies.

In her spare time, she enjoys walks and online window shopping.


For more information on this fellowship, contact