Itoro Eze-Anaba, Founder of the Mirabel Rape Crisis Center was honoured at the AWP Network ‘Get Connected’ Forum for her dedication, service and commitment to women and girls empowerment in Nigeria. Founded in 2013, the Mirabel Centre is a sexual assault referral centre established to provide free holistic, high quality medical and psychosocial services to survivors of sexual assault and rape. The centre is managed by Partnership for Justice and is located at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital.
Mary Olushoga, Founder of the AWP Network states, “In 2015, Itoro Eze-Anaba was listed as a ‘AWP Network Power Woman’ for her work. That same year, her organisation was recognised by the AWP Network as one of 14 leading organisations changing the lives of Nigerian women and girls. I am indeed honoured to have established a platform that recognises African women and girls serving their local communities. My team and I were very excited to put this Forum together, as such conversations are needed in a society that does not fully recognise sexual assault, harassment, and violence as crimes against humanity.”
Olushoga continues, “We are glad to establish a platform that allows us to hear directly from those doing the ground work. Those who do this work are usually not recognised. These organisations struggle with everything from funding to staff recruitment. We hope that we can continue to shed light on their work so that the government, private organisations and volunteers can continue to support their efforts. It is a wonderful opportunity for me to provide a platform for leaders, for women, doing amazing work in their various communities, and especially to Itoro, thank you for all that you do and for inspiring the next generation of African women and girls.”
Eze-Anaba stated as she received her award, “Thank you to the AWP Network for honouring me with this award. It is really a pleasant surprise. Thank you to AWP Network founder, Mary Olushoga for the opportunity to speak about my work, my passion and commitment providing hope to survivors of rape and sexual violence. Also, thank you to my staff for all of the work that they do.”
On this day, the AWP Network hosted a panel on ‘Sexual Harassment and Assault in the Workplace,’ it was at this event that Eze-Anaba received her award. Speaking on the panel were the following stakeholders, Jolaoluwa Ayeye, Representative of the Stand To End Rape Initiative, Iheoma Obibi – Ashoka Fellow, Feminist and Founder of Intimate Pleasures, Nigeria’s first online adult novelty shop, Blessing Timidi Digha-Omolere – Women Deliver Young Leader, Feminist, and girl-child/sexual reproductive health and rights advocate, who came all the way from Ondo state to Lagos for the event. This event took place at the JobMag Center in Yaba, Lagos.