Reliance Foundation and Vital Voices Join Forces to Launch WomenLead India Fellowship to Nurture Women Leaders in the Social Sector


MUMBAI : Few can argue with the fact that great leaders are made during the most trying of times, and by those who set ambitious, urgent and innovative goals to solve complex global issues.


However, every great leader needs a strong support system.


The WomenLead India Fellowship aims to be that system of support for women leaders in India who are taking on the world’s greatest challenges. Launching today with a nationwide call for applicants, WomenLead India is a 10-month long fellowship programme powered by Reliance Foundation and Vital Voices Global Partnership to strengthen the leadership capacity of female catalysts of social change in any of the following sectors:


· Rural Transformation: Developing holistic, sustainable solutions to address the main development concerns of rural communities, such as economic empowerment, nutrition security, water security, ecology, governance capacity of local organisations, and women’s empowerment.

· Education: Addressing inequalities in access to Early Childhood Care and Education, primary, secondary, and higher education across income, gender, social group and geography; improving quality of educational services imparted across all levels; and developing or strengthening educational institutions.

· Sports for Development: Building character and leadership skills among the youth in India by using sports as a medium to encourage lifelong learning and by also expanding access to sports in rural and marginalised communities.

· Arts, Culture & Heritage: Preserving and promoting India’s art, culture, and heritage; advancing the knowledge of Indian arts, culture, and heritage domestically and globally; sustaining and making art and culture relevant to the younger generation.


The Fellowship will provide tailored leadership capacity building and skills development to 50 women leaders who will be selected to participate in the inaugural cohort. Selected fellows will also benefit from mentoring support and peer-to-peer engagement.


“We believe in the collective and creative power of women to empower not just themselves, but also their families and communities. When women lean on women and rise together, they build a network and system of leadership that can help transform the world around them. It is our mission to drive and support this leadership amongst women. The WomenLead India Fellowship powered by Reliance Foundation and Vital Voices is an important step in nurturing inspirational women leaders who will be at the forefront of driving social change in India,” said Mrs Nita M Ambani, Founder-Chairperson, Reliance Foundation.


“Every problem solver needs a support network and we aim to be that for these women leaders by making a long-term investment in both the woman and the important work that she is doing to advance and empower the people of India and beyond,” said Ms Alyse Nelson, Co-Founder, President, & CEO, Vital Voices. “We are thrilled to partner with Reliance Foundation to make this investment in India’s next generation of women leaders.”


Reliance Foundation and Vital Voices are looking for innovative and collaborative women leaders who have a minimum of three years of work experience in enacting social change in their communities in one or more of the sectors outlined above; women who are driven by a clear sense of mission and who are committed to advancing the status of women and girls and women who are committed to transparency and good governance.


The WomenLead India fellows will be mentored in one of the following tracks based on their prior experience.


· Economic Empowerment and Entrepreneurs

· Social Sector Leaders

· Changemakers


The 10-month fully funded programme serves as just the start of a relationship between the Fellows and the vast network of women leaders and global influencers who make up the Vital Voices and Reliance Foundation networks.


Applications close by 3 October 2022. Those interested in learning more about how to become a part of this transformative new programme are encouraged to visit:


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