As I reflect on the last seven months as the Dean of the African Food Fellowship, my heart and brain are racing!
The African Food Fellowship is growing stronger, one country at a time. The Fellowship is off to a great start, with 57 Fellows in Kenya and Rwanda stepping forward to jointly champion food systems transformation in Africa. The Kenya Fellows have completed Stage1 (Systems Insight) and are in Stage 2 (Systemic Action) where they are working with world-class leadership coaches and mentors to develop their skills and bring their ideas and concepts in Horticulture, Aquaculture and Agri- Finance to life. Through inspiration, coaching, and technical mentoring, the Fellows will deepen their capacity for leading systems change on the continent.
Meanwhile, in Rwanda the newly onboarded cohort is embarking on their Stage1 journey with a focus on three impact areas: Access to Nutritious Foods, Sustainable Land Use and Food Entrepreneurship. The Fellows come from diverse food systems backgrounds and include 12 access to nutritious food experts, 9 sustainable land use and labour specialists and 9 food entrepreneurship experts.
The cohort is geographically spread across all 4 provinces and Kigali city, with 47% women and 53% men. The Fellows will benefit from lessons learnt implementing the Food Systems Leadership Programme in Kenya and an active network of peers. The priority impact areas in both countries feed in to each other and provide for active cross learning.
I am excited that the Fellows have taken the first crucial step in changing the narrative around African Leadership. Together, we are connecting and harnessing the collective intelligence of African food systems leaders to guide and shape agendas as well as to set priorities for investments, policy, and action. The aftermath of Covid-19 pandemic and other food system shocks present us with an unprecedented opportunity to do better at country and continental levels. We have all witnessed first-hand the catastrophic effects of a disrupted food systems and the need for proactive leadership.
I invite everyone to Meet our Fellows, and join us in our journey to transform Africa’s food systems.
Learn more by following the African Food Fellowship social media channels.