AFRICAVE ESSAY COMPETITION
The GenVolution Conference is an opportunity to bring present, past, and future leaders together from the African Diaspora to share ideas on advancing the continent.
Three fellows from the Africave program will have an opportunity attend the event in New York City, for a life-changing opportunity to build their social capital by networking with professionals in social, political and economic careers.
Read their essays below, and please give your feedback on which fellow you believe captured your attention with their unique perspective on future leadership in Africa.
VOTING CLOSED - THANKS TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED!
“Moving abroad will always remain the dream of many Africans. From where I come from, Nigeria, It is almost normal for one to say that he/she wishes that he/she was not from Nigeria because the bad reasons to leave, outweigh the good reasons to stay. Being an African should be citizenship worth cherishing. “
dominica ABENA AMANFO
“Life is defined in the dictionary as “the quality that makes living animals and plants different from dead organisms and inorganic matter. Its functions include the ability to take in food, adapt to the environment, grow, and reproduce.” But, what exactly is life? What purpose in the grandest scheme of things does one’s life serve? Obtaining a life of meaning and purpose, is something everyone struggles with at some point in their journey, especially when trying to discover their identity and reason for their existence.”
“A lot of people are always figuring out what their life purpose should be but I think mine is to be happy and follow my dreams. I believe my life experiences, passion, and components of what makes me happy are all factors in determining my life purpose. I want to equip myself to the greatest extent possible to meet the requirements to fulfill this purpose.”
“My life purpose is to redefine narratives and change several negative stereotypes attached to African cultures, values, norms. My purpose is to build a world of inclusion where different groups who come from different backgrounds, diverse cultures, and traditions in Africa do not feel excluded and disconnected from the external world. The African continent has been a constant victim of biased narratives and negative stereotypes attached to its people, cultures and value system.“
samuel moses elba
“The zest to make a positive change in Africa and change in the narrative of Africa and Africans in the world that the very reason why I take creativity innovation and entrepreneurship as a career. Am a twenty-first-century innovator who's ready to learn and explore if given the opportunity too. Africa as they normally say "it's a land filled with milk and honey" I strongly agree with that…”
“My life purpose is to serve and help people whenever I can. And particularly in serving and helping I am more concerned in health and well being of people by looking in deep in the agriculture sector. As an African, I understand that still, there are still problems and challenges in the health and agriculture sector in Africa.”
“My African identity is who I am, and a constant reminder to remain grounded yet ambitious. To me it encompasses being a young African woman, coming from highs and lows and still moving towards achieving her goals. My African identity goes beyond my skin colour, my religion, language and ethnicity. It does not limit me, instead, it empowers me to dare to go beyond the expectations that are often laid upon young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.”
“My journey started on the 16th of May 2000. I was born and raised in Sweden; however, I grew up in an African household of my mother’s incredible Tanzanian culture and my father’s empowering Congolese heritage. As a young African girl with parents from DRC and Tanzania, I feel the responsibility to contribute and work towards Africa reaching its true potential.”
“Today I am the dishwasher: I pour the next batch of dirty utensils into a basin and grope for another basin to start drying the previously washed utensils. It is half-past eight, and I am kept company by a swarm of mosquitoes as I try to finish this chore. I have been washing dishes for as long as I can remember, and the process is hard-wired into my muscle memory. I perform it with such effortlessness that you would think I made a living out of it. This hour isn’t my favorite time of the day, but it is the only time I can be alone in the kitchen and talk to myself about my dreams.”
“I want to become a medical doctor, a Member of Parliament, a pilot or a pastor. Growing up, anyone who asked me what I wanted to become in the future received one of these jobs as an answer. I always enjoyed helping others. As a result, I sensed I could help the majority of people through these options.”
“If I could choose to live anywhere in the world, I would choose to live in Africa, because that is where my roots are, Africa is my place of origin. Other than that, I would choose Africa because we have already lost great African professionals to western countries. I don't want to be one of those. I want to get my qualifications and exhaust my skills and knowledge in helping Africa become a better place because we are never getting anywhere if all the qualified people are not willing to stay and help develop their continent.”
FAITH ADESAYO OLUWANIYI
“Being born an African has come with both its limitations and its blessings, I can choose to focus on the bad roads, high poverty and unemployment rates, hunger and inequality that exists or I can choose to use these prevailing circumstances as an opportunity to effect positive changes in the lives of the people in my community, country and continent. I am certain that I have been born for a purpose more than myself or family, I am a change agent, a pacesetter, and I intend to do this via the Central Bank.”
“Many people prefer responding to the above question from a metaphysical vantage point which in my opinion, brings about a certain degree of obscurity to the topic in the process. I consider as my life’s purpose,‘ the rationale behind the choices I make and the reason underpinning my actions and lifestyle. My penchant for activism keeps aflame the fire to speak up even if it means being the only one speaking. My choice to become a law student is also a function of my inability to be silent in the face of injustice or to bury my feelings, shutting of avenues for expression.”
“Hi, my name is Totoola Kehinde! What's my life's purpose and its relationship to being an African? In one's life, we can all have purposes and plan for them, but we can't control destiny! With a philanthropist's heart, my purpose in life is now becoming more obvious and clear prior to the exposure I got about a year ago! All of a sudden, my thinking transformed! And everything changed! Why? Simply because I was informed!”
ARINOLA OMISORE KAWTHAR
“Growing up in the 21st century as a child in a regular Nigerian environment, my adulthood was woven around the stories of how people struggled to travel overseas to become successful in life. It was a trend. As against Africa, the white man's land was seen as an indication of success.
However, while I began to evolve, taking charge of my life experiences and flipping through several pages of books, I realized that the aforementioned stories were founded on misguided notions.”
SEGUN EMMANUEL SAMUEL
“Africa is often depicted in the media as a continent of mass exodus. So far poverty, famine, terrorism, corruption, malaria, poor education, to name a few is what the Africa identity represents. How can this narrative be changed and who will change it?”
“I am Gerald Revocatus Mukama,18 years old from Tanzania. Raised by a single mother with a humble background. Tanzania is vast and diverse in culture. According to the 2012 census, 77% of Tanzania’s population is aged below 35 years old and 19% are aged 15-24 years old. This shows that the majority of Tanzanians are Youth. Many experience a lack of employment, low access to education and skills development.“