Women for Refugee Women is delighted to announce the appointment of Alphonsine Kabagabo as our new Director. From January 2021, Alphonsine will be leading the charity and all our work to support and empower refugee women to tell their own stories and advocate for a fairer asylum process.

Alphonsine brings over 20 years of professional experience dedicated to empowering women and girls, as well as personal experience as a refugee woman. Alphonsine is an inspiring leader who will take our work forward into the future so that we can continue to build the confidence and skills of refugee women and create transformative change.

Alphonsine says:

“I am delighted to have been appointed as Women for Refugee Women’s next Director from January 2021.

My own journey as a survivor of the Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi and a refugee woman has taught me the importance of having the voice and the skills to change my life. I am extremely excited to be joining an organisation that gives women who are seeking asylum the chance to live a fulfilling life through empowering them with skills to be confident, to tell their stories, and to advocate for a fairer asylum process that treats women with respect and dignity.

I am bringing to WRW my deep passion for empowering girls and women, and over 20 years of experience in leading and managing programmes for the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). I led the development of transformative programmes that have given hundreds of young women the confidence to speak out and influence changes to policies on issues that are important to them, such as child marriage, HIV/AIDS prevention, fighting violence against girls and young women, and providing reproductive health services to women in refugee camps. I am also bringing my experience of being a past trustee of Womankind, an international feminist organisation supporting women’s rights and a trustee of SURF, a non-profit organisation supporting survivors of the Rwandan genocide.

I am excited to be joining a team of dedicated trustees, staff and volunteers and to work with them to ensure that Women for Refugee Women continue to grow and achieve its ambition. I am delighted that Natasha Walter, the founder of WRW, will remain in the organisation and I am looking forward to building on the amazing work she has started.

I look forward to ensuring that we continue to amplify the voices of the refugee women, that we strengthen and build new partnerships, and that we can achieve systematic changes for a fair asylum system.”

Rachel Krys, chair of Women for Refugee Women’s board of trustees, says:

“I and all the trustees at Women for Refugee Women are absolutely delighted that Alphonsine Kabagabo will be joining the charity as our new director. We were clear from the start of the recruitment process that we needed to find a leader who would build on the legacy of the last 14 years and take us forward into the next stage. Alphonsine will bring so much experience and so much understanding to the role, as well as her commitment to social justice and her lived experience as a refugee woman. I personally look forward to supporting her over the coming years to ensure that the voices of refugee women continue to be heard and to build a fairer asylum process.”