Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany introduced their new award, the Merck Foundation Africa Song Award ‘More Than a Mother’ 2021 in partnership with African First Ladies who are also the Ambassadors of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother, for All African Singers, Musical Artists and emerging talents, to create a song with the aim to raise awareness about Empowering Girls and Women through Education at all levels.
Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and President of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother expressed, “This is the first time we have launched the Merck Foundation Africa Song Award ‘More Than a Mother’. I am very excited to introduce this award in partnership with my dear sisters African First Ladies. The continent is known for its versatile music artists and talents who have been instrumental in communicating messages and spreading awareness on various issues. Music and Art have the capacity and influence to make the problem felt, which further stimulates emotions and leads to engagement and action. Hence we used this medium and introduced these awards to encourage the music composers and singers to create songs to raise awareness on the importance of girl education and empowering girls and women at all levels”.
“I strongly believe that Music has the power to touch the hearts of people. Music has the ability to bind communities and bring about a cultural shift in the society. We have produced and launched more than 20 songs with famous singers from Burundi, Ghana, Rwanda, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Zambia, Gambia to raise awareness about male infertility and to break the Stigma around Infertility in Africa. Moreover, it is also an honor for us to have The President of Liberia, H.E. GEORGE WEAH and the Former First Lady of Burundi do their own songs for our Merck Foundation More Than a Mother campaign.
Through the Song Awards, we aim to spread awareness on important issues of girl education and women empowerment in the African continent”, added Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej. Merck Foundation strongly believes that Education is one of the most critical areas of women empowerment. Merck Foundation’s ‘Educating Linda’ program helps young girls who are unprivileged but brilliant to continue their education. The spirit of the project is to provide an opportunity to such girls to pursue their dreams and reach their potential through access to education. It has been seen that many girls drop out of school due to lack of necessities such as fees and uniform.
Merck Foundation Educating Linda program has contributed to the future of 100’s of girls in partnership with the African First Ladies as part of ‘Merck Foundation More Than a Mother’ campaign.