Quotations from Africa’s Top Philanthropy Experts at the 2022 APN Assembly

The African Philanthropy Network APN is the only continent-wide network of organizations and individuals in Africa and its diaspora that promotes the culture of philanthropic giving. 

APN brings an ecosystem of philanthropy support institutions and civil society member organizations serving different forms of philanthropy currently in 48 African countries. Established in 2009, APN was conceived as a space for African institutions to interrogate and intervene in the power dynamics that shape how resource mobilization, distribution, and spending impact the possibilities of transformative change in Africa.

APN Assembly is the only conference that brings together individuals, organizations and networks working to strengthen the framework and effectiveness of African philanthropy as a force for common good.

Practitioners and partners developed new narratives for various kinds and cultures of philanthropy during the APN Assembly this year as they exchanged experiences, new knowledge, and collective views on the development of African philanthropy.

Below are a few memorable and relatable quotes from the occasion.

Quotes from the APN Assembly 2022

“Giving does not mean that we are subsidizing the state of its failures, we give and champion African Philanthropy because it’s in our being and in our power to translate change and impact”

Dr. Lerato MoKoena; Lecturer (@LeratoMoKoena10)  #APNAssembly2022 

“Operating in silos and in social enclaves does not help us achieve the change we envision as a community. How we make the world, depends on how we relate with one another and build one another”

Dr. Lerato MoKoena – Lecturer (@LeratoMoKoena10)  #APNAssembly2022 

“Giving doesn’t mean that we are subsidizing the state of its failures. It amplifies the abilities & opportunities of communities.”

Lerato Mokoena, @UPTuks 

We need to tell our brothers and sisters to stop sitting on our “stories”… if writing about them is difficult, then let’s TikTok them in a fun way

– Jimm Chick; Communications Professional (@jimmchick)

“Our diversity as Africans is an asset that we can put to use to drive change.”

Karen Chalamila, Gender & Media Consultant @Kay_C15

“We have to reach a point where we understand that as the system of the world changes, philanthropy also changes. Giving does not mean that we are subsidizing the state of its failures, we give because it’s in our being and in our power to translate change and impact.”

–  Dr. Lerato MoKoena – Lecturer (@LeratoMoKoena10)  #APNAssembly2022 

“Through building strong integration platforms with the young and old, we are able to create the change we envision as African philanthropists. We need the energy of the youth and the wisdom of the elders”

Janet Mawiyoo; Certified Executive Leadership Coach, Sustainable Development Specialist,Organization Development Practitioner, Non-profit Management & Resource Diversification Adviser, Impactful Philanthropy Adviser

“If you have an idea, start. We should not let good ideas go to waste because we are afraid to start”

Rosa Nassivila; Sexual and Reproductive Health Researcher

“This world can become mundane – we assume we know… Very often we become jaded as things become familiar…may we not lose the sense of wonder, of awe as we drive change” 

Jacqueline Asiimwe; Lawyer, Feminist, Philanthropist and Social Development Thought Leader (@asiimwe4justice)

 “This Assembly is a testament of radical love because the whole narrative of African Philanthropy is built and anchored on solidarity and love for humanity.”

Moses Isooba; Human Rights Activist and Governance specialist (@IsoobaMoses  @ngoforum #APNAssembly2022)

“Change takes time, change takes joint effort and change takes consistent action in the right direction.” –

Jacqueline Asiimwe; Lawyer, Feminist, Philanthropist and Social Development Thought Leader (@asiimwe4justice)

“This #APNAssembly2022 is the manifestation of partnerships. A manifestation of African Philanthropy Driving Change. Philanthropy is in our DNA.. giving is our way of life. And Philanthropy is Radical Love”

– Moses Isooba; Human Rights Activist and Governance specialist (@IsoobaMoses  @ngoforum #APNAssembly2022)

“No one has ever become poor from giving back to the community.”

-Youhanes J. Magok Junior; Mining Engineer, Environmentalist, Teacher, Entrepreneur, and Author. (@YouhanesMagok @NYDA2018. #APNAssembly2022)

“If we are to develop Philanthropy in the region of Africa, we have to start listening more to young people, work with them, and partner with them. For without the youth, the future of Philanthropy shall prove to be a challenge”

Francis Kiwanga; Executive Director -Foundation for Civil Society (@KiwangaFrancis @FCSTZ  #APNAssembly2022)

“Philanthropy is giving of ourselves beyond self-interests”

Dr. Lerato MoKoena – Lecturer (@LeratoMoKoena10)  #APNAssembly2022 

“Philanthropy is not something that is done to or for Africa, it is embedded in our communities & has driven change in the past.”

Theo Sowa; Women’s rights and Social Justice Activist  (@TheoSowa)

“Youth philanthropy should not be separated from the three factors of production i.e land, capital, and labor.”

Misheck Gondo, Youth Leader, Activist, Writer, Develop-mentalist and Political Analyst 

“Philanthropy obliges us to localize. Are we aware of the needs of our societies? Invest in communities using community resources. Learn best strategies from others.” –

Misheck Gondo, Youth Leader, Activist, Writer, Develop-mentalist and Political Analyst 

“Philanthropy begins when you realize you have something to give..to one who has less or doesn’t have. Philanthropy does not begin when we have bag loads of money from donors. Philanthropy begins at home”

-Ntambiye David; Executive Director – Aspire Debate Rwanda (@Ndavid_06)

“Popularizing Africans that give for the cause is important, we should ensure that we popularize and make known the people that are engaged in advancing a selfless culture”

Segawa I Sebastian  (@ssegawaS

“The power of living is built on three pillars – religion, politics, and economics; if we can master the art of these three pillars as leaders we can walk in results of action the next day”

Dr. Lerato MoKoena – Lecturer (@LeratoMoKoena10)  #APNAssembly2022 

“One hand can’t clap”. There’s immense power when a group of people with common goals come together

– Youhanes J. Magok Junior; Mining Engineer, Environmentalist, Teacher, Entrepreneur, and Author. (@YouhanesMagok @NYDA2018. #APNAssembly2022)

“We need to keep ourselves from the things that we accuse the West of – speaking on our behalf, and regurgitation of ideas. Storytelling and documentation are extremely important in shifting narratives, in shifting the power to use our diversity as power

Karen Chalamila, Gender & Media Consultant (@Kay_C15)

“African Philanthropy is inherent… it’s like those ephemeral pools after rain that dry up soon after. On the outside looking in, it’s almost invisible. Philanthropy in Africa is community driven.. community are the first responders” 

Tendai Murisa; Development practitioner and Researcher   (@tmurisa @sivioinstitute #APNAssembly2022)

“How can we be able to reset the narrative to ensure that religion and culture are not used to reinforce oppression? That they’re simply tools that individuals use for guidance, not a measure of how we all experience life”

– Mugabekazi @TheMugasha  

“Philanthropy provides a ladder so that those that have the drive, those that are motivated can climb”

Briggs Bomba; Programs Director, Trust Africa  (@BriggsBomba)

“Let’s not wait to have it all together, for resources.. we need to start now”

Patrick Nsama; Councilor for Chainda Ward, Lusaka Zambia (@nsamapatrick15

“It is the role of African Philanthropy to disrupt the narratives that dictate how philanthropy should be done on the continent”

Twasiima Bigirwa; Feminist (Segal Family Foundation)

“If we are to develop Philanthropy in the region of Africa we have to start listening more to young people, work with them, and partner with them. For without the youth, the future of Philanthropy shall prove to be a challenge”

Francis Kiwanga; Executive Director – Foundation for Civil Society (@KiwangaFrancis @FCSTZ  #APNAssembly2022)

“We seem to be stuck in the poverty paradox where despite all the domestic minerals & wealth, resources aren’t solving the problems of the people. This is where we have to harness the power of the people.”

– Youhanes J. Magok Junior; Mining Engineer, Environmentalist, Teacher, Entrepreneur, and Author. (@YouhanesMagok @NYDA2018. #APNAssembly2022)

“Anything done for us that doesn’t include us will not work.”

Eliane Mbende; Social Activist (@MbendeEliane)

“Young people are not a homogeneous group & we must try & understand them in order to find out how to engage them best in philanthropy.”

Misheck Gondo, Youth Leader, Activist, Writer, Develop-mentalist and Political Analyst  (@GondoGizim from @SAYoF_SAD)

“There’s a lot of pressure on the youth to have properly detailed plans but it is okay to start with the hope & the imagination to spark radical change.”

Karen Chalamila, Gender & Media Consultant (@Kay_C15)

“We need to start recognizing the impact we’re making and be proud of the change we’re creating. If we do not complement our efforts as African Philanthropists others will not see the need. So let us strengthen our story and own with pride our impact”

– Theo Sowa; Women’s rights and Social Justice Activist  (@TheoSowa)

“Philanthropy is not something that is done to or for Africa, it is embedded in our communities and has driven change in the past.”

–  Theo Sowa; Women’s rights and Social Justice Activist  (@TheoSowa)

“Build genuine relationships in the communities because that is the only way we can be more impactful in our daily work as an organization.”

Akiteng Isabella; Feminist, Gender enthusiast, Public Speaker (@akitengisabella)

“We should never forget that Africans give and they give a lot. If we don’t tell this story of the African giver, we shall not be able to sustain our narrative as an African philanthropy community. Africans don’t give to be noticed” 

Tendai Murisa; Development practitioner and Researcher   (@tmurisa @sivioinstitute #APNAssembly2022)

“Every man, woman & child must look within themselves and find the courage to do the unimaginable to effect change for the African continent.” 

Patrick Nsama; Councilor for Chainda Ward, Lusaka Zambia (@nsamapatrick15
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