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Africa Forward

Africa Forward changing the narrative

A call to action

Africa Forward

Africa Forward is a groundbreaking initiative co-created by members of the African Chapters of Catalyst 2030 to rapidly accelerate actions that place our continent’s challenges at the heart of collaborative, partnership driven opportunities.

Africa Forward’s objective is to support the next cohort of social entrepreneurs as we collaborate on innovative pathways and solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on the continent.

Our goal is to achieve strategic shifts focusing on four Pillars, evolving the social enterprise and entrepreneurial ecosystem to create strong, supportive and collaborative social impact.


Strategic Shifts

1. Narrative shift

Restructure the approach to African narratives by profiling the African leadership of local social enterprises.

2. Ecosystem development

Undertake initiatives to enable cooperation between governments and social entrepreneurs to strengthen the social enterprises ecosystem through collaboration and wellbeing initiatives.

3. Funding

Redirect approaches to funding to ensure that at least 50% of all funding goes to African led organisations directly, without the use of intermediaries and with particular consideration for youth and gender focused organisations.

4. Job creation and career counselling

Expand the number of jobs in the social sector by 10% and use workforce development programmes and career counselling to recruit skilled African employees and bring young people into the sector.

Africa Forward Conference 2023

In a groundbreaking gathering of Catalyst 2030 members, chapter chairs, donors, and stakeholders hailing from an impressive 23 countries across sub-Saharan Africa, the Africa Forward Conference in Naivasha proved to be a shift for the continent. Together, participants engaged in dynamic co-creation exercises, crafting a visionary strategy and action plan that will guide Africa Forward in the coming years. One goal is to build the social innovation space for Africans by Africans.

The African spirit with participants converging from many corners of Africa and beyond. This synergy is propelling Africa Forward toward the identification of social innovators in additional countries in the rest of Africa. The ripple effect of the collective efforts of the conference participants promises to catalyse transformative change, driving the mission of Africa Forward across the African continent and beyond.

Key objectives and strategies for the next year include:

  • Shifting the narrative, funding, ecosystem mapping, and job creation.
  • Advocacy for social innovation by 2025, focusing on tangible and timely objectives.
  • Emphasis on data, strategic communication, supporting local organisations, knowledge sharing, and the incorporation of AI in social innovation.
  • Centred on ecosystem building.
  • Focus on shifting the narrative to create an inspiring collaborative.
  • Attracting funding and opportunities.

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