Women for change 2013: Marie Nomo Messina / Cameroon


The mission of the Hand in Hand orphanage is to protect the children from all types of violence or exploitation, to administer specialised care ensuring their physical and psychological development and to restore their self-confidence by encouraging them to continue their studies. By teaching them skills in sewing and hotel service it fosters their integration back into society and entry into the working world.



The interior of the building has suffered water damage and has faulty electrical wiring. In particular, the dormitories are in a state of severe disrepair. In addition, the number of children has doubled, so its capacity for 50 children is not sufficient to handle the 71 children it currently houses. The orphanage also accommodates both girls and boys, so it requires separate facilities. The building desperately needs to be repaired and expanded so its work can continue and all the children can enjoy better living conditions and hygiene.

By expanding and renovating the centre, the Hand in Hand association aims to continue its reintegration initiative and further develop its prevention missions. With the help of professionals, the association will provide more face-to-face support for local young girls who are victims of sexual abuse and addiction.



women for change, get involved!

The Orange Foundation and the Women’s Forum have created the women for change Award to recognise humanitarian projects led by women in Africa.

From 16 September to 15 October 2013, people voted online for the project they thought was the most important. The project of Maria Raharinarivonirina, president of SOS Children’s Villages Madagascar, received the most votes and won a €25,000 grant. On October 16th, participants at the Women’s Forum in Deauville also had a chance to vote for their favorite project.They selected the project of Marie Nomo Messina, Director of Hand in Hand association in Cameroon, who also received a €25,000 grant.

All 5 women are all making the world a better place through their commitment to promoting women’s rights, dedication to children and their work to reintegrate marginalized populations.Because the Orange Foundation wants to support all of them, the 3 other candidates will each receive a €5,000 grant to help them develop their projects

Discover or rediscover their stories.

Edition 2013: Sarah Toumi, Brigitte Michel, Marie Noma-messina, Anta Mbow, Maria Raharinarivonirina.

Edition 2014: Mariama Moussa, Noushka Teixeira, Massego Mmipi, Adamou Hawaou, Togo Mariam Sidibe.

Edition 2015: Lily Fouad Attallah, Nour Al Emam, Khedija El Madani, Rocio Nieto, Nora Belahcen Fitzgerald.

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