After nearly 250 years of democracy, the United States of America had its first female vice president. Vice President Kamala Harris broke barriers and carved a path for women in a space typically dominated by men. She made history in 2020 after a lifetime of public service decorated with feats that are forever etched in the archives of US democracy.
On March 26, 2023, Vice President Harris arrived at the Kotoka International Airport in Ghana for her first diplomatic visit to the republic. She was met with the ever-colorful display of Ghanaian culture. The visit is part of a three-nation tour in Africa to deepen diplomatic ties and invest in the continent. The VP said she looked forward to meeting with leaders, young people, and entrepreneurs as we work together to invest in innovation and ingenuity across the continent upon arrival at the airport.
A key highlight of Vice President Harris’ visit was her meeting with six notable women entrepreneurs to discuss economic empowerment and closing the digital gender divide. She described them as extraordinary entrepreneurs who are leading the future of Africa. These women are emerging global titans in agriculture, healthcare, retail, and the culinary industries.
Notably visible among the six women was Sommalife’s co-founder Christina Mawuse Gyisun. Mawuse has become a force in rural development in northern Ghana, leveraging modern technology to provide innovative solutions for women smallholder farmers. Having led her team to digitally profile 50,000 women farmers in the last three years, she is on a mission to be the first agritech enterprise to profile and impact one million smallholder farmers in West Africa. As ambitious as this mission is, Mawuse is determined to lead a young and passionate team to execute it.
Mawuse’s source of passion and commitment emanates from her days as a street hawker in Wa after school hours. She has been an eyewitness to the exploitation of women producers who toil daily yet live in extreme poverty. Mawuse believes Sommalife is the answer to ending the exploitation of women producers and creating tailored impact plans to boost their production and income.
During the meeting, Vice President Harris pledged a one billion dollar investment to support women in the public and private sectors throughout Africa. She emphasized that empowering women economically would have a ripple effect, uplifting families and communities. Vice President Harris’s visit to Ghana and her commitment to investing in women entrepreneurs demonstrate a global recognition of the importance of gender equality and economic empowerment.
In that singular moment, as the tapestry of past struggles and future aspirations intertwined, Christina Mawuse Gyisun, in the presence of Vice President Kamala Harris, mirrored the emblems of courage, resilience, and transformative possibility. Their union bore witness to the enduring spirit of female leadership, a shining beacon guiding us towards a future where all women are unshackled, soaring on wings of empowerment and opportunity.