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African Philanthropy Forum Podcast Series

African Philanthropy Forum Podcast Series

By African Philanthropy Forum

African Philanthropy Forum community consists of experienced individuals with a track record of success in various fields across the continent. We created the African Philanthropy Podcast Series to share this knowledge with the world and inspire others to action.
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The Co-CEO Strategy for Equitable Philanthropy

African Philanthropy Forum Podcast SeriesOct 25, 2023

The Co-CEO Strategy for Equitable Philanthropy

The Co-CEO Strategy for Equitable Philanthropy

In this podcast episode, we dive into the unique Co-CEO strategy with our guest Katie Bunten-Wamaru, Co-CEO, African Visionary the African Visionary Fund, exploring the distinct roles and responsibilities of the co-leaders and how they complement each other.

After 12 years on both sides of the table, Katie saw the inequities of the philanthropic sector firsthand. She watched nonprofit leaders twist themselves into pretzels to fit into competing donor frameworks, while at the same time funders struggle to diversify their pipeline. Now co-CEO of the African Visionary Fund, Katie is helping foundations fund more equitably and drive more resources to African visionaries to accelerate their impact.

In this episode we uncover the impact stories of African visionaries empowered by three years of long-term, unrestricted funding, shedding light on the fund's learning in this regard.

We also get an update on the progress of their goal to raise $10 million to support 35 organizations by 2023. Discover the transparency and accountability in AVF's grantee partner selection process, as well as their approach to viewing money as just one resource among many. Finally, we explore the surprises encountered on the AVF journey and how they influence the fund's work.

African Visionary Fund is a non-profit that provides an avenue for donors to move resources quickly to African visionaries to accelerate their impact. The Fund is designed to allow African visionaries to further focus on efficiently delivering on their mission and investing for the future.

Oct 25, 202352:48
A Conversation with Fred Swaniker

A Conversation with Fred Swaniker

Our guest on this episode of the APF Podcast Series is Fred Swaniker. Swaniker is a Ghanaian entrepreneur, leadership development expert, and education advocate. He is known for his efforts in fostering leadership and entrepreneurship skills in young Africans to drive positive change on the continent. Swaniker is a prominent figure in the field of education and leadership development, particularly in Africa.

In this episode Swaniker discusses his entrepreneurial journey and the organizations he has founded, what excites him about African youth and what changes he is seeing on the continent about how young people are being engaged and prepared for today’s world.

He is the founder of several educational institutions aimed at nurturing the next generation of African leaders and entrepreneurs. Notably, he co-founded the African Leadership Academy (ALA) in 2004, which is a pan-African institution focused on identifying, developing, and connecting young leaders from across the continent. In 2013, he  co-founded the African Leadership University (ALU), which offers innovative higher education programs designed to develop the skills and mindset required for leadership and entrepreneurship. 

Sep 26, 202323:14
Fostering Peace, Equity and Justice

Fostering Peace, Equity and Justice

Our guest on this episode of the APF Podcast Series is Sister Jane Wakahiu, Associate Vice president of Program Operations and Head of Catholic Sisters Initiative at Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation is a family foundation established in 1944 by the man who started Hilton Hotels. The foundation provides funds to nonprofit organizations working to improve the lives of individuals living in poverty and experiencing disadvantages worldwide.

The global Catholic sisterhood at the Condrad N. Hilton Foundation is a vibrant network of 700,000 vowed women religiously rooted in their profound faith and belief in the dignity of the human person. Catholic sisters are committed leaders and advocates for the communities they serve to foster peace, equity, and justice. Their hands-on ministries and partnerships bring dignity and hope while dramatically improving the lives of youth, families, and communities around the world, particularly those who are marginalized and suffering from structural injustice and disadvantage. Catholic sisters work to educate children, provide care to those in need, promote peace, and advocate for justice while standing alongside individuals experiencing oppression. With over 700,000 dedicated sisters worldwide, their work, services, and partnerships with the Church span over 100 countries, 250,000 Catholic schools, 50,000 social service organizations, 20,000 healthcare facilities and 16,000 senior/elderly care facilities.

Oct 31, 202212:04
Giving Voice to the Youth of Africa

Giving Voice to the Youth of Africa

Our guest on this episode of the APF Podcast Series is Hosh Ibrahim, Board Member at the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, an African Foundation focused on the critical importance of governance and leadership for Africa. The Foundation is driven by the conviction that governance and leadership lie at the heart of any tangible and shared improvement in the quality of life of African citizens.

In this episode, Hosh discusses the importance of engaging African youth for Africa to rise to its true potential. The conversation covers critical issues including jobs, civic participation, energy, technology, climate change, cultural diversity and unity of the African spirit. He also shared insights into how African youth can find their voice and gain political and economic power.

Hosh Ibrahim began by work focused on governance, and its paramount role in development on the African continent. This led to further work on global south human rights, due to the interconnectivity of many of the issues. He continues to serve as a board member of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation for African Governance, where he previously worked as the Director of Special Projects.

He currently serves on the Global Advisory board of Sesame Workshop, creator of Sesame Street children’s television, for early childhood development. The Board of The Sigrid Rausing Trust, and on the Board of Outright Action International.

Hosh is a trustee of The Khartoum Breast Care Centre in Sudan for women’s health which he helped establish, and he also previously served on the board of The Africa Centre of New York.

Aug 25, 202229:15
Understanding & Addressing the Imbalance in Funding African CSOs

Understanding & Addressing the Imbalance in Funding African CSOs

Our guest on this episode of the APF Podcast Series is Atti Worku, Co-Chief Executive Officer of African Visionary Fund, a non-profit that provides an avenue for donors to move resources quickly to African visionaries to accelerate their impact. The Fund is designed to allow African visionaries to further focus on efficiently delivering on their mission and investing for the future.

Discussing the topic Understanding & Addressing the Imbalance in Funding African CSOs, Atti shares insights on the under-funding recorded for developmental initiatives on the continent in comparison to organizations headquartered outside the continent. The Fund is committed to ensuring funds go into the hands of local leaders and in the long term, change the stereotypical bias and behaviours that limits funding to proximate organizations.

She also gave insights into AVF’s long-term unrestricted funding approach which is helping African visionaries with catalytic fuel to propel their impactful solutions even further as they drive systems change and transform development across the continent.

With much impact recorded by an organization that is less than 5 years old, this episode packs a lot of useful nuggets for anyone or organization interested in African philanthropic funding.

Atti Worku

Atti is a leader and advocate with over 10 years of experience as a nonprofit CEO. Throughout her career, Atti experienced the biased and unjust challenges of raising philanthropic dollars in the U.S. for a locally-led, community-centered African organization. As the AVFund’s Africa-based co-CEO, she is focused on supporting the personal and organizational growth of African visionaries and their innovative impact ideas.

Prior to joining the AVFund, Atti founded and led Seeds of Africa, a nonprofit developing the educational foundation for the next generation of Ethiopia’s leaders. Since 2008, Seeds has impacted over 2,000 people, transforming the livelihoods and trajectories of students, their mothers, and their families in the community of Adama, Ethiopia. With Atti at the helm, Seeds grew from an after school program serving 15 kids to a full-time, multi-dimensional school educating 250 students from pre-K to middle school and providing them free universal healthcare and nutrition. Seeds also became a micro-finance institution that provided over 150 mothers small business micro-loans, entrepreneurship skills development, and literacy resources.

For more information about our podcast series, please do not  hesitate to reach us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Jul 27, 202222:44
Peace in the Niger Delta: The Role of CSOs

Peace in the Niger Delta: The Role of CSOs

The Foundation for Partnerships Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND Foundation) is a non-profit foundation that promotes peace and equitable economic growth in Nigeria’s Niger Delta region through multi-stakeholder partnerships. We are so excited to have Tunji Idowu, the Executive Director of the Foundation on this episode of APF Podcast Series.

Mr. Idowu shared details about the various strategies deployed by the Foundation in ensuring a peaceful mitigation of the Niger Delta issues. Some of the strategies are either collaborative market-based, community-owned programs etc. which plays key role in mitigating conflicts and boost economic opportunities for local businesses, ensuring that economic progress occurs in a systemic, inclusive, and sustainable manner.

Noting the significance of the region to Nigeria’s oil and gas production, this episode also explored the impact of environmental degradation and how it is affecting stakeholders as well as the role of PIND in engendering trust and bringing back the lost economic value-add of the citizenry.

Tunji Idowu

Tunji “PT” Idowu is an accomplished transformational and innovative leader with over three and a half decades of global, multi-sectoral, and cross functional experiences in non-profit management and social investments; corporate affairs/public relations; human resources and organizational capability; diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)/change management; and leadership development. His core expertise lies in building stellar leadership teams, ensuring process optimization, developing inclusive cultures, and enhancing organisational effectiveness.

As the executive director, he oversees all organizational activities at PIND, including liaising with the board of trustees and partners. Prior to this role, he was the deputy executive director, overseeing all programs and business development efforts. A pioneer in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) practice in corporate Nigeria, he helped to enhance Chevron Corporation’s DEI efforts at the global level by driving key initiatives beyond the US. His stint at Chevron, where he worked before PIND, also included multiple roles where he was actively involved in addressing some of the Niger Delta region’s most difficult challenges through Chevron’s highly-regarded Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) community engagement process, and working with various stakeholders in reforming systems that help in reducing poverty and conflict.

Tunji is passionate about developing successive generations and through his work, ministry and personal networks, he is heavily invested in mentoring and capacity building. An MBA (honors) alumnus of the Saint Mary’s College, Moraga, California, he also has a post-graduate diploma in Mass Communications, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, both from the University of Lagos, Nigeria. He is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resource Management (SPHR), a certified mediator, certified facilitator, and leadership coach.

For more information about our podcast series, please contact us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Jun 30, 202224:24
Advancing Opportunities for African Youth, Transforming Families and Communities

Advancing Opportunities for African Youth, Transforming Families and Communities

Mastercard Foundation has been on the fore front of advancing opportunities for African youth, transforming Families and communities in selected countries across Africa. In 2018, the Foundation launched the Young Africa Works strategy in Kigali, Rwanda, and set an ambitious target of enabling 30 million young people, particularly young women, to secure dignified and meaningful work by 2030.

On this episode of APF Podcast Series, our guest was Reeta Roy, President and CEO of Mastercard Foundation and she shared insights on the Foundation’s strategy in empowering and up-skilling of youths in Seven African countries through the Young Africa Works program.

Besides the Young Africa Works program, she also highlighted other initiatives deployed which has enabled the Foundation’s success in its operating environment as well as hurdles and eventual impacts made by the various initiatives.

Reeta Roy

As President and CEO of the Mastercard Foundation, Reeta leads one of the largest private foundations in the world.  At heart, she is an optimist who believes that everyone deserves an opportunity to learn and prosper.

That is Reeta's own story. Her mother mortgaged their sole asset—a small home in Malaysia—enabling Reeta to pursue her education in the United States and build a successful career. That career began in the United Nations before transitioning to the private sector, where it culminated in her role as Divisional Vice President of Global Citizenship and Policy at Abbott and Vice President of the Abbott Fund, its corporate foundation.

Today, Reeta is making her mother's investment in her education count by scaling opportunity for others. For over a decade, she has quietly and collaboratively steered the Mastercard Foundation to invest its considerable resources in one region – Africa–while also supporting young Indigenous Canadians. Under her leadership, the Foundation has charted a bold path: deploying over $6 billion to expand access to education, deepen financial inclusion, and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects. For example, the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program has become one of the largest education and leadership development initiatives of its kind, having already enabled over 40,000 young people in Africa to pursue their secondary or higher education, and is on track to impact a total of 100,000 young people by 2030. More recently, the Foundation launched a $1.5 billion partnership with the Africa CDC to drive COVID-19 vaccination across Africa and address systemic inequities in public health. Collectively, the Foundation's programs and partnerships have improved the lives of 135 million people. What distinguishes the Foundation is not just the scale of its work but the way that it works—taking a values and trust-based approach to partnering with others by listening and co-creating solutions, with a laser-focus on impact.

For more information about our podcast series, please contact us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

May 30, 202224:18
The Future of Giving: Perspectives of a Next-Gen Philanthropist

The Future of Giving: Perspectives of a Next-Gen Philanthropist

We are so excited about this episode of APF Podcast Series and we know you’ll be thrilled as well. For the first time, we had a Next-Gen philanthropist as a guest in the person of Elizabeth Tanya Masiyiwa and she helped pack the future of giving from a unique perspective.

She touched on how her childhood experiences have shaped her thinking and guided her philanthropic journey. Tanya also highlighted the role of education in changing lives and the transformational impact of investing in people. Beyond these, she spoke about evolution of philanthropy and the new energy Next-Gen philanthropists bring to the table while acknowledging extraordinary leadership of the preceding generation.

If you are a young African looking to get involved in strategic philanthropy, this is an episode you don’t want to miss as Tanya also shared lessons and challenges as a young woman navigating the space and provided insights into how young Africans can engage, thrive and achieve sustainable impact in Africa.

Elizabeth Masiyiwa

Elizabeth Tanya Masiyiwa is a social entrepreneur and smartech executive. She is CEO of Delta Philanthropies UK and the CEO of Akello, an African company transforming education with technology-based solutions.

Elizabeth is a non-executive director on the board of Econet Wireless Zimbabwe and Ecocash Holdings Zimbabwe, two of the largest companies listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange. She is a board member of Higherlife Foundation and leads the Office of Design and Innovation. She is responsible for the education portfolio across the foundations and the Econet Group of Companies.

Elizabeth is a board member of Ashesi Foundation, sits on Harvard University’s Leadership Council for the Centre of Africa Studies, and advises entrepreneurship and philanthropy networks.

For more information about our podcast series, please contact us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

May 19, 202217:25
Transformative Mentorship, Youth Engagement & the Next Generation

Transformative Mentorship, Youth Engagement & the Next Generation

The Kenyatta Trust's imperative is clear; to sustainably create opportunities for growth academically, morally, and socio-economically for the nationwide class of scholars admitted into The Trust each year. Helping to level the inequalities these youth face will compound over time to create empowered, visionary members of society who will be agents of positive change; transforming more lives just as theirs have been here and now.

On this episode of APF Podcast series, Mwende Mbevi, Executive Director of the Kenyatta Trust joins us for an insightful session and deep-dive into the operations and impacts being made by the Trust. This covers the core values; service, leadership, integrity, justice and peace that the Trust instills in their student's DNA and in turn eventually teaches the importance of these values to their own families when the time comes. 

The Trust provides support to these young leaders because every individual that forms The Kenyatta Trust family will not only positively impact society but will have a story to share with their own children. 

Mwende Mbevi

Mwende oversees all strategic, operational, and administrative functions at The Kenyatta Trust. Together with an amazing team, she selects bright but vulnerable students as scholars of their high school scholarship program; they support the same students through high school and into university or tertiary institutions. She oversees all activities surrounding the mentorship programs as well as the Economic Empowerment project which has a countrywide footprint.

For more information about our podcast series, please don't hesitate to reach us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Apr 22, 202217:55
A Focus on Blood:Water

A Focus on Blood:Water

Blood:Water is an international nonprofit that partners with African community-driven organizations to end water & HIV/AIDS health disparities through organizational strengthening & financial support. Since 2004, Blood:Water has partnered with grassroots organizations in sub-Saharan Africa to join them in serving the communities where they work and to improve the health of community members. Through outreach and intimate knowledge of the areas where they work, our partners identify and empower local heroes to champion issues affecting the health of community members.

On this episode of APF Podcast Series, we had as guest, Nadia Kist, the Director of Africa Partnerships for Blood:Water. We had interesting conversations that centered around the organization's goal, strategy and effects of leveraging local partnerships for sustainable impact in communities. 

Nadia also provided insights on community-based philanthropy. This is an exciting episode you don't want to miss if you are leaning towards community-based philanthropy and stay abreast of what opportunities are there and what pitfalls to watch out for?

Nadia Kist

Nadia Kist is a leader in Global Health Philanthropy with over 18-years of experience leading HIV-focused programs and organizations in Africa. She is committed to building equitable community-centered models of philanthropy that address the complex interconnected drivers of socio-economic and health disparities. She endeavors to achieve this through positions responsible for strategic leadership and direction setting within institutions that aim to influence global health through dignifying, equitable and effective philanthropy. At the heart of her work is a personal vision to see the fullness of life rightfully accessed and protected at an individual level across communities most impacted by HIV/AIDS.

The latter portion of her career progressively focuses on developing and scaling African-led and community-driven funding models for health. Throughout her career, she provided technical and managerial oversight to multi-million-dollar public health programs at regional, national and sub-national levels throughout the East and Southern African region. She has extensive experience managing complex programmatic implementation and grant partnerships with academia, host governments, faith and civil society organizations. 

She has a demonstrated track record of influencing health policy processes, through sensitive government engagement and collaborative approaches to technical advisement. She sits on the board of the East Africa Philanthropy Network (EAPN), hold membership with the Africa Philanthropy Forum (APF) and the International AIDS Society (IAS). She is also the Board Chair and co-founder of Seeds for Hope (SFH), a youth-focused charitable trust expanding access to formal education through academic scholarships in Kenya.

For more information about our podcast series, please don't hesitate to reach us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Apr 11, 202227:21
ACT Foundation: Supporting Social Impact Across Africa

ACT Foundation: Supporting Social Impact Across Africa

Aspire Coronation Trust (ACT) Foundation is a grant-making nonprofit organization established in 2016 to support local, national and regional non–profit organizations working to address challenges and associated vulnerabilities across the African Continent. 

On this episode of APF Podcast Series, we had an exciting session with Osayi Alile, the Chief Executive Officer of ACT Foundation; she shared insights on the story of ACT Foundation and its pan-African impact. As a trailblazer in the nonprofit sector, she provided guidelines on the critical factors required to start a Foundation and maintain a sustainable momentum for far-reaching impact.

Osayi Alile is a quintessential leader with over 20 years in the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) and third sector with a wide array of experience covering International Development, Business and Philanthropic Management, Fundraising and Sustainability. As a visionary leader, Alile has served in various leadership capacities including being the Executive Director, FATE Foundation; Vice President, Junior Achievement of Nigeria; and CSR Consultant, Access Bank Plc. Osayi Alile has served the nation and the world at large in various capacities including Council Member on Youth Unemployment for the World Economic Forum Global Agenda; Committee Member, Ministry of Communication Technology for IT Business Incubation Technology; and was recognised as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Osayi Alile is also the founding curator of the Global Shapers Forum Nigeria and serves as a consultant on sustainability, non-profit management and strategy.

For more information about our podcast series, please don't hesitate to reach us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Mar 25, 202228:53
Economic Empowerment and Social Development

Economic Empowerment and Social Development

Can we discern the relationship between economic empowerment and social development? When CSOs make impacts and partake in developmental issues, we notice a corresponding improvement in the citizenry, in particular- healthcare, education, earning opportunities, and rights. 

In this episode of APF Podcast Series, we had a very interesting conversation with Noura Selim, the Executive Director of Sawiris Foundation for Social Development on the topic: Economic Empowerment and Social Development

Prior to joining the Sawiris Foundation, Noura worked at McKinsey & Company in New York, Dubai and Egypt. At McKinsey, Noura served public and private sector clients, particularly on health care and education topics. Her healthcare work spans the pharmaceutical space as well as public payers and providers in the US, Europe and the Middle East, while her education work spans K-12 and technical and vocational training and education in the Middle East. In the past years, Noura was involved in leading the implementation of a large-scale transformation in technical education and training, focused on improving performance and employment outcomes, as well as leading a health care reform program aimed at increasing access and quality of care. Prior to McKinsey, Noura worked as a Teaching Assistant at the University of Pennsylvania's Engineering school.

Noura is currently a board member at National Investment Charity Education Fund (NICE), representing Sawiris Foundation for Social Development. In May 2021, Noura has appointed to the Advisory Board of Harvard Business School Middle East and North Africa for a two-year renewable term. Noura was also selected from the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader for 2019. Noura served as a Chairwoman of the Arab Foundations Forum (AFF,) representing the Sawiris Foundation on the AFF Board of Directors from 2017 until 2020. She has also joined the C20 2020 Engagement Group as a member of the C20 International Advisory Committee. Lastly, Noura served as a Treasurer on the Board of the Harvard Arab Alumni Association from 2014-2016.

For more information about our podcast series, please don't hesitate to reach us at with "APF Podcast Series" as the subject of your email.

Feb 21, 202226:32
Conversation with Mo Ibrahim
Jan 11, 202228:51
A Focus on Allan and Gill Gray Philanthropy
Dec 15, 202120:34
A Focus on Humanity United
Dec 15, 202130:46
Directing the Narratives of Africa

Directing the Narratives of Africa

The stories we hear and share about Africa have a great influence in shaping not just what others think of the continent, but how and what we think and act on as well. The narrative is a major factor in shaping public opinion about events, news, and even developmental stories on Africa.
On this podcast session, we are glad to have Moky Makura, the Executive Director of Africa No Filter, an organization that supports the development of nuanced and contemporary stories that shift stereotypical and harmful narratives within and about Africa.

You will definitely enjoy this session.

Dec 15, 202124:50
A Focus on TY Danjuma Foundation
Dec 15, 202127:10