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The WE Empower UN SDG Challenge is the first-of-its-kind global competition for social entrepreneurs who are advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals and inspiring entire communities to act to create the world we want by 2030. The WE Empower Challenge honors innovative women leaders from around the world who are pushing the SDGs forward through sustainable business practices and inspiring others to follow suit. The opportunity recognizes their innovative work and provides Awardees with capacity-building training sessions and opportunities to connect with an unparalleled global network to advance their enterprises. This program elevates and showcases the valuable contribution women entrepreneurs and business leaders can make toward the SDGs and solving the world’s greatest challenges. 

In 2022, the WE Empower Challenge Awardees will participate in events surrounding the 77th UN General Assembly as well as connect with renowned business experts from around the world. Awardees will also participate in a dynamic pitch competition, hosted by fashion designer, activist and Vital Voices Board Member Diane von Furstenberg, to present their business for the opportunity to receive a $20,000 grant. 

Watch the 2021 Awardees present their business solutions that are changing the world at the 2021 WE Empower Pitch Night.



Global Innovation Partner 

Equality Accelerator

Challenge Pacesetter

SDG Advocate


Nidhi Pant

2021 Fellow, Co-Founder & Head of Finance and Partnerships, S4S Technologies

Nidhi Pant is the Co-Founder of Science For Society, or S4S Technologies, a company that helps farmers earn extra income by converting farm losses to value added products with its patented, award-winning solar dehydration technology. S4S technologies provides these micro-entrepreneurs with the right combination of technology, finance, and market linkage to set them up for success, working with over 6500 farmers, 505 Micro-Entrepreneurs and serves 850 Food and Beverage Customers including marquee brands like Marico, Nestle, Sodexo, and Indian Railways.

Pant’s business supports the following SDGs:

SDG 1: No Poverty

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy


Sara Saeed

2021 Fellow, Co-Founder & CEO, Sehat Kahani

Sara Saeed is the Co-Founder and CEO of Sehat Kahani, an e-healthcare company in Pakistan that aims to democratize access to quality and affordable healthcare through ICT-enabled solutions and a network of qualified home-based women doctors. Sehat Kahani has reached out to 360,000 direct beneficiaries through 35 E-Clinics and 3.1 million beneficiaries through its preventive health portfolio. In addition, through their E-Health Application they have reached out to 160,000 beneficiaries via their retail and corporate verticals and were actively involved in COVID screening, treatment and referral process on a local and national level in collaboration with the government during the COVID-19 crisis in Pakistan.

Saeed’s business supports the following SDGs:

SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

SDG 10: Reduced Inequality


Aline Sara

2021 Fellow, Co-Founder & CEO, NaTakallam

Aline Sara is the Co-founder and CEO of NaTakallam, a social enterprise that offers high-quality curated language services delivered by refugees and their host communities through digital platforms, including online language teaching and tutoring, translation and virtual interpretation services, and cultural exchange sessions. To date, NaTakallam has connected with 10,000+ language learners around the world and provided over a million dollars to over 200 workers from refugee or host community backgrounds worldwide and aims to shift the perception of refugees from burden to asset.

Sara’s business supports the following SDGs:

SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure

SDG 17: Partnerships to Achieve the Goal

United States of America

Panmela Castro

2021 Fellow, Founder & CEO, Panmela Castro Arte e Cultura and Rede Nami

Panmela Castro is an artist and founder of Panmela Castro Arte e Cultura and Rede Nami, a social enterprise that utilizes art education, different arts media and especially public graffiti murals, to raise awareness on women’s rights and the prevalence of domestic violence in Brazil. Panmela sells world-renowned artwork and graffiti murals through the for-profit company, while the NGO Rede Nami holds workshops and educational programs in the arts to a network of more than 10,000 women in Brazil. Panmela’s work aims to promote structural change in society, bringing knowledge through art and communication so that girls and women know how to fight for their rights.

Panmela’s business supports the following SDGs:

SDG 4: Quality Education

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 10: Reduced Inequality

Mandy Brander

Olufunto Boroffice

2021 Fellow, Founder & CEO, Chanja Datti Ltd

Olufunto Boroffice is the Founder/CEO of Chanja Datti, a waste collection and recycling social enterprise based in Northern Nigeria. The company addresses gender inequality unemployment by providing a platform that transforms waste into wealth while also empowering the unemployed women, at-risk youths, and waste pickers of the region. Chanja Datti is directly responsible for diverting over 4,500,000 kg of recyclable waste from landfills in the Abuja metropolis while creating 250 green jobs and additional sources of livelihood for 500+ women in 7 underserved communities in the Abuja metropolis.

Boroffice’s business supports the following SDGs:

SDG 4: Quality Education

SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

SDG 11: Responsible Consumption and Production