Vois Africa gives voice to young African philanthropists 

Vois Africa was established after the first African Youth in Philanthropy Conference in Arusha, Tanzania in 2015. The conference revealed the lack of a youth agenda in philanthropy and that young people were not adequately represented or included on the relevant platforms where African philanthropy was discussed.  

By acting as convenor, Vois Africa hopes to bring together young people across the continent and abroad to construct a narrative of youth philanthropy, to raise a consolidated voice of young people in decision-making platforms, and to commission research that will allow young people to contribute more meaningfully to the philanthropy sector in Africa and abroad.

It also aims to showcase the work young people are doing that their fellow citizens are either unaware of or not adequately acknowledging.  

In April 2017, Vois Africa hosted a one-day YouthBank workshop in Nairobi, Kenya to introduce the YouthBank concept to representatives from organizations in Kenya that work with young people.

YouthBanks are youth-led grantmaking programmes within a host organization, which channel money into projects that will improve the quality of life of local communities as a way of involving young people in philanthropy. 

In partnership with South African Young Leaders Network (SAYLN) and SGS Consulting, Vois Africa also facilitated South Africa’s first YouthBank coordinators’ training in Citrusdal, South Africa. What stood out for a majority of representatives was the power a YouthBank places in young people’s hands and the kind of positive impact this power can have on them.

When young people are empowered to make their own decisions regarding the development they want to see in their communities, they take more ownership and become more concerned with ensuring the sustainability of the development.  

The one-day workshop confirmed the vast numbers of African young people doing effective work in philanthropy on the continent. It also demonstrated that there are very few narratives shared about African youth in philanthropy.

Vois Africa aims to influence a change in this reality. It hopes to encourage and influence more involvement in philanthropy among African youth, and to create a network of young philanthropists who will educate and learn from each other.

Through the united voice of African youth in philanthropy, false perceptions of giving in Africa can be changed, stereotypes about the involvement of young people in philanthropy and development can be challenged, and active participation by young people can be encouraged. 

For more information:
Contact Yolisa Shugu yolisa@sgsconsulting.co.za

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