Tendisai Chigwedere thrives on opportunities to leverage innovative and collaborative strategies to advance progressive development and governance in the global South. As a founding member of faith-based NGO Transformación Urbana Internacional, she helped spearhead civic engagement efforts in urban slum communities around Mexico City equipping local leaders in advocacy, community health and small business development skills. As a connector and proponent of facilitating space for innovation, dialogue and collective solutioning, Tendisai returned to Zimbabwe and; co-hosted the first TEDxHarare in 2011; supported the further opening of space for creative economies and citizen journalists in launching Zimbabwe’s first creative hub, Moto Republik; and worked on Interchurch Organisation for Development Cooperation (ICCO)’s developmental evaluation of its small grant facility to local civic engagement partners.
Believing in the need to bridge grassroots efforts with wider advocacy and public policy processes, Tendisai joined the public service in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs during the period of the Government of National Unity (GNU) in Zimbabwe, where she focused primarily on the African Union portfolio.
The intersection of Tendisai’s professional path now aims to link strategic civic engagement with public sector innovation as a vehicle towards vibrant people centered development and progressive governance in Africa. Tendisai has a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from CSU, Sacramento, USA and a Master’s degree in International Development with a concentration on Advocacy from Eastern University, USA. She was a UN Disarmament Fellow in 2012. Tendisai speaks English, Spanish, French and Shona.