10 May 2012

Africa: Philanthropic Fund Ensures Engagement of Young Global Leaders From the Continent Civil Society Groups

Photo: WEF
Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the World Trade Organization.

press release

Addis Ababa — A group of six Young Global Leaders (YGLs) from Africa are being supported by the African Fellowship Programme which was set up in May 2011 by Aliko Dangote, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Dangote Group in Nigeria.

The objective of the fund is to help African YGLs from civil society and non-profit organizations with limited financial means to engage and participate in the World Economic Forum's activities.

Since the launch of the programme, 19 African YGLs have been able to participate in World Economic Forum activities. These include the participation of four YGLs at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2012 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland; four in the YGL Harvard Kennedy School training module; and five at the recent YGL Annual Summit in Mexico.

The collaboration is part of Dangote's philanthropic activities aimed at increasing the quality and quantity of young African leaders.

Professor Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, said: "I am very proud of this initiative by Aliko Dangote, which will greatly strengthen the participation of our African YGLs in the global platform of the World Economic Forum.

I hope that successful business leaders in other parts of the world will follow Mr Dangote's example and invest in the next generation of leaders. We need their passionate engagement in today's global challenges."

Under the age of 40 when nominated, Young Global Leaders are outstanding individuals who represent the future of leadership and are selected from all sectors of society: business, government, civil society, academia, social enterprise, the arts, media and culture. They take part in task forces that address specific challenges of public interest with the objective of shaping a better future for the world. A list of YGL initiatives can be found at www.redesignourworld.com.

This week, 47 Young Global Leaders from 19 countries are meeting at the World Economic Forum on Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to discuss approaches to innovation and entrepreneurship as well as economic and social growth throughout the region. YGLs are taking part in sessions to explore the challenges and opportunities confronting Ethiopia.

They will also participate in a workshop with members of the Forum's Social Entrepreneurs, Investors and Global Shapers Communities to make recommendations on African entrepreneurship for the B20 process.

David Aikman, Head of The Forum of Young Global Leaders, said: "The opportunity to participate in a workshop aimed to influence the B20 agenda underscores the importance of young African leaders sharing their expertise and experience with the world.

Thanks to the Dangote fellowships, we will be able to integrate significantly more African voices into the global agenda through The Forum of Young Global Leaders."

Dangote Group philanthropic foundation is supporting six non-business Young Global Leaders (YGLs) to travel to 2012 World Economic Forum on Africa in Ethiopia The African Fellowship Programme was established by Nigerian businessman Aliko Dangote to help African YGLs from civil society groups to engage actively in the World Economic Forum's activities.

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