Isatou Bittaye is a young African feminist with a strong belief in social justice and equality for all. The Gambian Human Rights Advocate has strong passion for advocacy for sexual and reproductive health and rights of women/girls, empowerment of young people, leadership enhancement and peaceful co-existence of all people.
Ms. Bittaye earned her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of The Gambia in 2010. In 2012, she moved on to bag a Diploma in Journalism from the Gambia Press Union School of Journalism. With an unwavering desire for excellence, Ms. Bittaye proceeded to pursue her master’s in Taiwan in 2013 and she graduated with M.A in International Studies at National Chengchi University, Taiwan.
Despite her focused academic pursuits, our super girl Isatou has been an active advocate for women and girls’ sexual and reproductive rights in her country and beyond. She has a commendable wealth of work/volunteer experience. Her advocacy journey started as a Peer Health Educator with the Nova Scotia Gambia Association Peer Health Education Program, while educating her peers on sexual and reproductive health issues such as teenage pregnancy, safe and healthy relationships, and sexually transmitted infections.
Ms. Bittaye is a member of several youth organizations in her country including Peace Ambassadors –The Gambia and The Girls’ Agenda. Through her engagement with Peace Ambassadors – The Gambia (PAG), she actively steered and participated in several impactful activities, including community outreach programs on non-violence and peaceful co-existence of all people. She has also organized several training programs for young people such as the annual International Youth Summer School on Peace.
Currently, Isatou serves as the Communication Manager of The Girls’ Agenda (TGA), a youth-led movement formed in 2011 to advance the human rights of girls and young women in The Gambia. Through TGA, she has introduced new and beneficial initiatives for girls and young women in her community, as a strong advocate against harmful practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM), child marriage, and sexual violence. In August, 2015 her organization through partnership with “For My Sister”, a US-based organization hosted ten days summer empowerment camp on FGM for girls and young women within the West Coast Region of The Gambia. Also, as part of the 2015 “16 Days of Activism for the Elimination of all forms of Violence against Women”, (TGA) conducted the first ever Madrassa engagement project on Gender-Based Violence in The Gambia.
Being a passionate advocate, Isatou never passes up an opportunity to amplify her voice across appropriate platforms. She has participated in several national youth programs in her country, including the bi-annual National Youth Conference and Festival where key issues affecting young people are discussed and recommendations formulated and forwarded to policy makers to tackle such issues in the country. She has equally spread her strong representative spirit beyond The Gambia’s borders.
In 2013, she participated in the UN Women Commission on the Status of Women (CSW57). In recognition of her efforts as an outstanding youth advocate for the rights of girls and women, she was recently accepted as a Young Leader in the Women Deliver Young Leaders Programme Class of 2016.
Isatou currently works as a Senior Programme Officer in the National Council for Civic Education, Gambia. In her job role she nurtures democratic and responsible citizenship in her country by facilitating civic education programs for the Gambian populace.
Our super girl is committed to contributing to the transformation of the African continent, particularly via gender equality and women empowerment projects, good governance, human rights and social justice promotion. In the near future, she hopes to be recognized as an exceptional African female leader.
We are proud of Isatou Bittaye and her strong commitment to the cause of girls and women in Africa. The sky is only her starting point!