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Monday 20th of September 2021

Nairobi, Kenya

Merck Foundation CEO Celebrated the Winners of “More Than a Mother” Fashion Awards 2020

Posted On : September 8, 2021

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21 Winners of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother Fashion Awards 2020 from Ghana, Namibia and Zambia were celebrated during the ceremony new fashion awards 2021 were announced by Merck Foundation in partnership with African First Ladies.

Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany conducted an award ceremony to felicitate and celebrate the winners of ‘Merck Foundation More Than a Mother’ FASHION AWARDS 2020. The awards were announced in partnership with the African First Ladies, also the Ambassadors of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother.

Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and President of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother expressed, “I am very happy and proud to meet our winners of the Merck Foundation More Than a Mother Fashion Awards 2020 and welcome them to our newly established ‘Fashion with Purpose’ community. I am impressed with their designs that deliver strong and influential messages to empower infertile women and say ‘No to Infertility Stigma’, via sensitizing our communities”.

During the Award Ceremony, Merck Foundation CEO advised the winners, the young African Designers on how their respective designs can be created and executed to open a dialogue and create the culture shift desired.

The Videoconference was also attended by past winners of Merck Foundation More Than a Mother Fashion Awards. It was also attended by Fashion designers & students and media representatives across Africa.

“My vision is to develop a community of young African Fashion Designers in order to catalyze a movement, that reaches and extends far beyond just fashion, and creates a culture shift and be the voice of the voiceless in their communities.

The fashion industry has already got enough flakes for being superficial. Let’s change this perception and create a meaningful fashion trend aiming to educate our communities. I love fashion and I strongly believe that designers can make designs for Men and Women that they would be proud to wear to show their contribution toward their communities, villages, and cities across Africa”, added Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej.

As a part of the awards, Merck Foundation has provided the winners with one year of access to an online educational training program called “MasterClass” which is an immersive online experience and self-paced learning course that can be accessed anywhere with the Internet and offers online courses in many areas such as the art of designing, fashion, photography, lifestyle, discovering your inner voice and many other areas of Media, Film making and storytelling, etc.

“I am very excited to be a part of the ‘Fashion with a Purpose’ community in Africa, led by Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej. She is a true fashion icon, who has a unique style. It was an absolute honor to meet her and be mentored by her. Thanks to Merck Foundation for involving us in such an important campaign”, emphasized Joel Musasa, Merck Foundation More Than a Mother Fashion Awards 2020 winner from Namibia.

During the Award Ceremony, Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej also announced the Call for Applications for their annual competitions for the best design that carries messages to address sensitive social and health issues. The two awards launched for the year 2021, for the African Fashion Designer community are:

  1. Merck Foundation Fashion Awards “More Than a Mother” 2021: All African Fashion Students and Designers are invited to create and share designs to deliver strong and influential messages to raise awareness about Infertility Prevention, Breaking Infertility stigma, and/or Empowering Girls and Women through Education.
  2. Merck Foundation “Make Your Own Mask” Fashion Awards 2021: All African Fashion Designers and Students are invited to create and share designs of masks and other clothing items that carry messages to encourage people to wear masks to show they care and at the same time make it creative and fun!

Content courtesy of Merck Foundation Fashion Awards

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