Mai Khidir, a British Sudanese woman was born in Sudan and grew up in London. She graduated with a BSc in Pharmacology from Kings College London and after graduating worked as PR/ Marketing Assistant for a food and drinks agency, and conference manager for a life science events company. She did not feel a sense of fulfilment in these positions, and wished to have a career in which she could contribute to the progress and advancement of developing countries, and more specifically her home country Sudan.
Mai has always wanted to give back to Sudan, and to help individuals and communities in Sudan grow and develop. Mai lived in Sudan for a year in 2012 working in various Ministries, and NGOs in public health, and was selected for the Milead Fellowship in Ghana, which seeks to create transformational African women leaders. Inspired by the Milead Fellowship, Mai created Al Sudaniya Mentoring (ASM) to share the knowledge she gained with other young Sudanese women.
Mai subsequently completed her Master’s in public health at the University of Liverpool in 2014, and moved to Sudan to work in public health. Whilst working in Sudan, she has been investing in the development and sustainability of the ASM programme.
Al Sudaniya Mentoring History
Al Sudaniya Mentoring (ASM) is an organisation that was established in 2013 to empower, engage, and inspire young Sudanese women to develop their personal and professional skills to become pioneering leaders of the future. The ASM programme was set up as a result of Mai Khidir’s participation in the Milead fellowship run by the Moremi initiative.
An integral part of this fellowship is to design and implement life changing projects in each fellow’s country of origin. Mai felt strongly that a project that involved building the confidence and personal and professional skills of young Sudanese women so that they have the courage to pursue their goals was very much needed in Sudan. A discussion sparked up with participants in the Milead programme was the inspiration to create this organisation.
Women face a multitude of challenges rooted in the deeply ingrained gender roles which means that women often lack the support and guidance they need to reach their full potential. The programme was developed to address these challenges and provide an opportunity for young women to develop key skills and knowledge that will allow them to flourish, thrive, and become dynamic agents of change.
Key reasons the programme was established
- To connect women from across the globe with women in Sudan in order to provide them with inspiring, dynamic role models that can effectively support and guide women to challenge the status quo and unlock their potential in their personal and professional lives to make a positive impact to their own lives and to Sudan. The ASM programme is more than just a training programme and aims to create a lifelong sisterhood between mentees and mentors.
- To address the lack of professional skills development in Sudanese educational institutes. In Sudan there is a scarcity of resources available to students to assist them with planning their careers and future.
- To allow Sudanese women to take ownership of newly gained skills within their communities and apply it into their personal and professional lives through increased opportunities and networks.
Al Sudaniya Mentoring provides tailored, holistic, one-on-one mentoring to young Sudanese women by Sudanese women across the globe with the goals of providing women with the tools and resources to become engaging leaders and make a difference in their communities in Sudan and to build a global network of Sudanese women for knowledge and skills sharing.
Al Sudaniya Mentoring envisions a future where Sudanese women across Sudan overcome the challenges they face to unlock their potential in their personal and professional lives to achieve their goals and make a positive impact in Sudan.
We strive for excellence in all that we do to ensure that mentors and mentees have the best mentoring experience, and so that mentees come away from the fellowship having learnt key skills for the future. We work to create engaging, interactive sessions that propel mentees forward in their personal and professional development.
We are deeply passionate about empowering women, and seeing them rise up to great heights in Sudan through breaking down barriers, and subverting norms.
We are all committed to the cause of empowering women in Sudan and we are constantly thinking of new and innovative ways to tackle the problem of personal development in Sudan. We are all hardworking, and driven individuals truly dedicated to the development of women.