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Merck Foundation Celebrates International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women and Girls with “Our Africa” TV Program, Songs, and Children’s Storybook

Merck Foundation (, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, together with African First Ladies and local partners, mark the “International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women and Girls 2023” as a part of the Merck Foundation “More Than a Mother” and “Educating Linda” program, through their various community awareness programs to Stop Gender Based Violence, Empower Women&Girls at all levels, Support Girl Education and more.

Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation explained, “At Merck Foundation, we have been continuously working towards raising awareness about elimination of violence against women and girls through many of our initiatives like children’s storybooks, songs and also through many episodes of our TV program “Our Africa”, broadcasted on National TV Stations across Africa.  We started our efforts to eliminate GBV in partnership with Botswana First Lady, via poster contest which was very successful.

Moreover, I strongly believe that Education is one of the most critical areas of women empowerment and can definitely help in eliminating violence of all types against women, therefore, we started our “Educating Linda” program to provide high performance by underprivileged girls with scholarships to continue their school education.”

Merck Foundation’s pan African TV program “Our Africa”, that is conceptualized, produced, directed, and co-hosted by Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and features African Fashion Designers, Singers, and prominent experts from various domains with the aim to raise awareness about social and health issues, has episodes dedicated to issues like Stopping GBV, Ending FGM, Women Empowerment and Supporting Girl Education.

Watch the Episode about Stopping GBV here:

Watch the Episode about Ending FGM here:

Watch the Episode about Women Empowerment here:

Watch the Episodes on Girl Education here:

Merck Foundation in partnership with The First Ladies of Africa, has launched an inspiring children’s storybook – ‘Not Who You Are’ to raise awareness on Gender Based Violence, to educate children about this sensitive social issue so that they can learn to respect girls and women, from a young age. Moreover, children storybook like ‘Educating Linda’, ‘Jackline’s Rescue’ and ‘Ride into the Future’ have also been launched to support girl education.

Merck Foundation is also going to soon launch Animation Films adapted from these storybooks in four different languages.

Read ‘Not Who You Are’ storybook here:

Read ‘Educating Linda’ storybook here:

Read ‘Jackline’s Rescue’ storybook here:

Read ‘Ride into the Future’ storybook here:

Merck Foundation has also released many songs to support women empowerment and girl education.

1. Watch, share&subscribe the “Like Them” song here, sung by Kenneth, a famous singer from Uganda:

2. Watch and share “Girl Can” song here, sung by two famous singers, Irene and Cwezi from Liberia and Ghana respectively:

3. Watch and share “Take me to School” song here, sung by Wezi, Afro-soul singer from Zambia, to support girls’ education:

4. Watch and share “Tu Podes Sim” Portuguese song, which means “Yes, You Can” in English by Blaze and Tamyris Moiane, singers from Mozambique in English here: 

5. Watch and share “ABC, 123” by Sean K from Namibia song here:

6. Watch and share “Superwoman Song” by singers Cwezi and Adina from Ghana here:

“Violence against girls, women, and children remains one of the most widespread and devastating violations of human rights not only in Africa but across the world today. Such kind of violence against women remains largely unreported due to lack of education, stigma, and shame. This International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, let’s unite against gender-based violence. Empower, support, and advocate for girl education and women’s rights. Together, we can create a world free from abuse and discrimination”, added Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Merck Foundation.

Media contact:
Mehak Handa 
Community Awareness Program Manager 
+91 9310087613/ +91 9319606669 

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About Merck Foundation:
The Merck Foundation, established in 2017, is the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology. Our efforts are primarily focused on improving access to quality&equitable healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) with a special focus on women and youth. All Merck Foundation press releases are distributed by e-mail at the same time they become available on the Merck Foundation Website. Please visit to read more. To know more, reach out to our social media: Merck Foundation (; Facebook (, Twitter (, Instagram (, YouTube (, and Flickr (


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