The E.W. Scripps School of Journalism’s Institute for International Journalism has embarked on a new international training project to provide guidance, consultation and tools to the young and emerging African leaders in sponsored by Citizen Exchanges-Professional Fellows Division in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State.
The IIJ’s new international engagement is the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) training called the Connect Camps. According to YALI, approximately one third Africans are between ages 10 and 24, and around 60 percent of Africa's total population is below age 35.
The U.S. President, Barack Obama, established YALI in 2010 “to support young African leaders as they spur growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across Africa,” according to the ECA’s YALI community sites.“Specifically, the Connect Camps will integrate collaboration, technology and innovation techniques in participatory, in-person workshops on business and entrepreneurship, civic leadership, and public management,” according to the ECA’s executive summary of the grant.
The new initiative would administer the Connect Camps in Africa from 2014 to 2016, unlike other YALI projects which take place in universities across the United States. The camps will train 160 “young entrepreneurs, leaders (and) professionals in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship and governance” in four countries for one week each Connect Camp.
The grant award of $485,000 is for the administration of sub-regional Connect Camps in sub-Saharan Africa. Director of the IIJ, Dr. Yusuf Kalyango will lead a group of resource experts in the areas of business administration, entrepreneurship, or strategic communication and leadership to travel to the four African countries (in East, Central, Southern, and West Southern Africa) for approximately two week each in 2015 for two Connect Camps. No specific dates have been set for the program at this time, though the ECA anticipates that the first engagement will be completed by March 2016. The specific plans for the IIJ’s program activities remain in the works.