[Ghana] Asanko Gold launches women in mining empowerment initiative
International mining company Asanko Gold Inc. has launched the Asanko Women in Mining “Botae Pa Initiative” at the Asanko Gold Mine, AGM, in Ghana, West Africa. The AGM is a 50:50 joint venture with Gold Fields Ltd which is managed and operated by Asanko.
Literally translated from the Ghanaian Akan language to mean “Good Purpose”, the Botae Pa Initiative is dedicated to the empowerment and furtherance of women at the Asanko Gold Mine and its catchment communities.
This Initiative has been the brainchild of the Asanko Women in Mining Chapter and is being funded 50:50 by the mine and its contractors.
The Botae Pa Initiative’s projects will be focused on achieving gender equality and empowering women and girls by promoting the mining sector to women as an exciting career choice, focusing on the needs of women and girls in the local communities in the areas of education, health, access to finance and business, and supporting the professional development of Asanko’s women through mentoring and networking programs.
The Botae Pa Initiative builds on Asanko’s existing corporate social responsibility programs and meets the globally recognized United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal #5 “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”. To date, Asanko’s CSR programs, under the umbrella of “The Asanko Opportunity Cycle”, have focused on education, health, access to capital and financial literacy, vocational training and assisting local businesses.
Commenting on the launch, Peter Breese, President & CEO, said, “Gender diversity isn’t just a buzzword of the moment, it makes good business sense to have a workforce that is made up of the best male and female talent out there.
"It’s important that we continue to develop and promote the women within our business, as well as the girls in our local communities, as they are the next generation of leaders and decision makers and the Botae Pa Initiative provides a dedicated platform to fulfil this.
"CSR is key to Asanko’s business and its long-term viability as a successful gold producer in Ghana. Over the past decade, we have built up a strong social license to operate and have been recognized for our award-winning CSR projects. The Botae Pa Initiative will complement these ongoing programs as well as deliver on our commitment to the UN’s SDG #5. I congratulate the Asanko Women in Mining Chapter for setting up this Initiative.”
Alongside the Botae Pa Initiative, Asanko also has a formal Women in Mining Charter outlining its commitment to gender diversity and empowerment, as well as a number of female-friendly policies designed to increase the number of women at the Asanko Gold Mine, which currently stands at approximately 10% for 2018 and is above the national average of 7% in the mining industry in Ghana.
Amongst these policies are: prioritizing female applicants for vacant roles, provision of site accommodation for all women on the mine, maternity leave extended from 14 to 16 weeks and the provision of site accommodation and meals for all nursing mothers and their nannies.