March: Africa Now Conference 2019

Updated: Sep 17, 2019

Towards the end of 2018, the African Youth Coalition (AYC) and Africa Now conference joined together to create a partnership for the 2019 Africa Now conference. Our partnership involved assisting in the conference and working hands prior to the conference. Africa Now board members also served as a committee under the African Youth Coalition. Working together for months we were able to pull through the 2019 Africa Now Conference at the University of Washington.

The conference focused on mobilizing young Africans in the diaspora to take action for Africa NOW. This was done through workshops, panel speakers, resources fair and networking. This year our panellist included Peres Owino, Simon Okelo, and Nourah Yonous.

Peres Owino, is a Kenyan born, award-winning storyteller’s directorial debut, “BOUND: Africans vs African-Americans” (BOUND) played several festivals around the world, winning the 2014 Women In Film- Lena Sharpe Award at Seattle International Film Festival, the 2015 Audience Award for Best Documentary at Pan African Film Festival and 2015 Best Film Directed by a Woman of Color Award at NYC’s African Diaspora Film Festival. Her film was presented in Seattle at Langston Hughes during Black history month. The audience loved hearing about her background and the reasons why she created Bound.

Simon Okelo, the founder of One Vibe. One Vibe establishes a Music & Art Center in Kisumu as a platform to encourage its citizens to participate in the critical engagement of culture, art, music, technology, and education to inspire youth to realize their full potential, avoid drugs and violence, and create a sustainable future. One Vibe also created the Madaraka festival in Seattle which brings in African culture and heritage to Seattle. They also created Avole nights which brings individuals together to share an African meal while engaging the audience in a live interview.

Nourah Yonous is currently the Founder and Executive Director at African Women Business Alliance- (AWBA), grassroots, strength-based, data-focused, holistic and culturally responsive platform for/by black women diaspora for an inclusive economy. We are pioneering a new understanding of disaggregated data in entrepreneurship; as a case study to ending poverty and levelling the playing field for both men and women.

Workshops were hosted by Arif  Gursel, Claire Gwayi-Chore, Tamuka Chidyausiku, and Isaiah Udotong.

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We were so happy to be a part of the Africa Now Conference 2019 and we can't wait to see what the Africa Now team has to bring for 2020.