Mbilire Rose Ndalama (BSc Agric. Econ, Univ of Malawi; MSc Agric. Econ, Univ. of Pretoria)
An economist, researcher, teacher and counsellor with a desire to influencepublic/social policies especially those that affect women. Before being awarded the Graca Machel scholarship she served as an economist in the Ministry of Agriculture and Food security in Malawi where she was involved in the project/policy planning, monitoring and evaluation necessary for providing recommendations to policy makersregarding new or old policies. Her passion for research which is key for making informed decisions landed her a role of role of Principal investigator for a project “Promoting household food security through improved input and output market access “which was jointly implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and IDEAA-Malawi. This role polished her to management, multi-tasking, leadership and collaborative skills. She has also networked on the international platforms both as a Graca Machel Scholar as well as an employee of Ministry of Agriculture. She once led a Malawi delegation and made a presentation on fertilizer subsidy at the 2007 FANRPAN meeting in Zambia.
She has a passion for issues affecting women such that while working as High School teacher she undertook voluntary work as HIV/AIDS counselor and secretary for Women’s Action Group against HIV/AIDS, which advocated for voluntary testing, and economic empowerment for both the affected and infected households. As a school matron, she mentored and provided counsel to students on issues pertaining to their studies, career choice as well as providing moral and physical support.
While working as Women’s Programmes Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture she among others coordinated the formation, development and management of Gender and HIV/AIDS groups to be targeted with agricultural loans and home-based care support.She also served as a committee member for the District AIDS Coordinating Committee which advocated for economic empowerment and Home based care for the affected and infected families. Her passion for women and marginalized is also evident in her MSc thesis that among others sought to assess if fertilizer subsidy in Malawi has been pro-poor as per its intended purpose.
She is currently working on a research proposal on financial inclusion which she hopes to translate to a PhD thesis and believes that the issues being addressed will be an essential source of information to guide policy and decision making on matters affecting women and the marginalised groups. She also offers private tutoring services in Mathematics, Natural science and English for foundation and intermediate phase.