Fulcrum for the Future: Girls Education and Family Planning as Levers on Development in the Sahel

Alisha Graves and Lucie Ouedraogo will discuss links between rapid population growth, development, and security in the Sahel region of West Africa. They will give an overview of the current state of family planning in the region—including how services have been impacted by Covid-19 in Burkina Faso. Presenters will highlight how girls’ education and safe space programs are helping to delay marriage and childbearing and better position adolescent girls as decision-makers in the home and beyond.

About the Speakers

Alisha Graves, Executive Director & Founder, OASIS

Alisha Graves is Executive Director of OASIS and a Founder of the OASIS Initiative at the University of California, Berkeley. Alisha lectures internationally on population and food security in the Sahel. She is a research fellow for Project Drawdown, analyzing the potential contribution of family planning for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Previously, she worked to improve women’s access to misoprostol, a generic, essential medicine. In this role, she worked on drug registration, operations research, and advocating for evidence-based maternal health policies across seven countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. She completed her MPH in International Maternal and Child Health at UC Berkeley in 2006.

Lucie Ouedraogo, Sahel Leadership Program Fellow

Based in Burkina Faso, Lucie Ouedraogo is a champion for reproductive health and rights in her community. She has been a midwife for over 15 years, working to provide quality family planning services in the Sahel. After serving as the Reproductive Health Manager at the Séguénéga, Lucie began working as the National Coordinator of the NGO Santé Sud in 2017. That same year she was part of the OASIS Initiative’s Sahel Leadership Program, using her project management skills and experience managing health facilities to further strengthen SRHR programs in her community.


Recording of Alisha and Lucie’s Presentation

Alisha and Lucie’s Presentation Slides

“Fulcrum for the Future” Presented by Alisha Graves

“The Sahel Context” Presented by Lucie Ouedraogo