The African Leadership Academy (ALA), based in Johannesburg South Africa, aims to create Africa’s leaders of tomorrow. “At the heart of what we’re doing is a belief that the main reason why Africa has not met its full potential today is due to the quality of the leaders that we have” says Fred Swaniker, Founder of ALA.
With a vision to raise 6,000 new leaders for Africa over the next 50 years, Africa Leadership Academy (ALA) is already on its way to achieving its objectives. Over 400 students have participated in the leadership program so far.
I had the privilege of meeting and speaking with Mame Mbodji, a student of African Leadership Academy, during the just concluded UNESCO Youth Forum in Paris. I was impressed by her wealth of knowledge on leadership reform, passion and commitment to make a positive impact.
She was really a strong advocate for the need to revamp the education system in Africa. If there was one thing she could do to effect change she said it would be to incorporate entrepreneurship and leadership into school curriculums. She said being at ALA is totally preparing her to take up the mantle of leadership in future. But she is not waiting until tomorrow; she already runs an “Art for Development” group with her friends, where they engage youth in underserved communities to build their skills. Talk about hands-on-leadership practice!
ALA founder, Fred Swaniker, says:
“We’re trying to create leaders in all segments of society, so leaders in science and technology, leaders in business, entrepreneurs who can create the millions of jobs that we need on the continent, political leaders who can create the policies that we need to develop properly,”
“We really need leaders from all walks of life to solve the diverse challenge that we have in Africa,” he adds.
By equipping the continent’s most talented youngsters with the qualities necessary to lead on their own accord, Swaniker has taken the first steps towards creating an Africa more equipped to meet these challenges head on.
Read CNN’s feature of ALA and the inspiring interview with its Ghanian-born founder. Click here to read full story on African Voices