"Meeting like-minded entrepreneurs to make the world a better place, exchanging ideas and experiences: that was very inspiring for me," said Selina from Kenya, summing up her participation in the ASA Autumn School for Sustainable Entrepreneurship October 28, 2017 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The 24-year-old social entrepreneur wants to give young girls easier access to education with her project Nashipai Maasai Community Projects in Kenya. In Dar es Salaam she met with other young people to acquire skills in sustainable entrepreneurship, develop new ideas and build international partnerships.
How can social entrepreneurs find innovative answers to tackle the effects of the climate change? This question was discussed in detail in the panels and workshops. The exchange has paid off: across regional and continental borders, know-how has been exchanged with great passion, contacts have been established and future cooperation projects have been initiated. Twenty-two young social entrepreneurs from eight African countries and from Germany came together to share experiences at the Buni Hub, the Tanzanian innovation hub. They all agreed that they want to actively shape a more social and ecological economy with their own business ideas. There is for example Fatima from Nigeria: her startup Waste 2 Watt generates electricity from agricultural waste for rural communities. Tilman and Gabriele from Germany are currently developing a solar-powered water filter system, called AqUVa, for clean water. And Collins from Ghana wants to promote environmental protection in his country with biodegradable paper bags.
The participants of the Autumn School received important impulses for their projects in this intensive week and want to transfer the concept of sustainability to their countries and regions. At the end of the conference, the young entrepreneurs had the opportunity to participate in the ASA Kaleidoscope, getting in touch with stakeholders from the economy as well as German and African partners of the ASA network, while presenting their projects to a wider audience.
The Autumn School for Sustainable Entrepreneurship took place in Berlin for the first time in 2016 and is run by the ASA program within the framework of the German-African Youth Initiative. This year, the Autumn School was organized together with Ashoka East Africa, a global social entrepreneurship network.
Sustainable development was also a main topic on the agenda at the following AGYI forum, which also took place in Dar es Salaam from October 29 to 31, 2017, focusing on the added value of partnerships in international youth exchange in the field of school and extracurricular activities.