Setting The Agenda for African Philanthropy
As we seek varied avenues to define our agenda for promoting an African voice and agenda for philanthropy, to grow a
transformed, relevant, vibrant and sustainable African community of philanthropy and social investment, we have deliberately
embraced the value of utilising a platform that brings together African Knowledge in philanthropy, to endeavour to address
the persistent development challenges in Africa.
The Inaugural AGN assembly was held in Nairobi in November 2010, where more than 200 participants representing
African grant making organizations and partners from other parts of the world converged to set an agenda for African
philanthropy. This project was as successful as AGN wished to mark a Pan African Grantmakers gathering. It depicted
the true African ways of offerings to community, different ways of social investment, and a shared commitment to action
to address African Philanthropy. The 2010 AGN Assembly brought to discussions and realisations onthe importance of the
sense of community in Africa, and marked the characterisation of Africa Philanthropic landscape, with the realms of
Horizontal and Vertical philanthropy, coining the informal and indigenous nature of giving in the former, and the
formal institutionalised form of philanthropy in the latter. A full report of the 2010 AGN assembly is available.
The second bi- annual assembly of the AGN was held in October and November 2012, in Johannesburg, South Africa, under
the theme ‘Growing African Philanthropy: What’s New, What’s Now, What's Next? It attracted well over 300 participants
from more than 25 countries. The assembly demonstrated similar success as the 2010 AGN Assembly, equally identifying
the long and deeply rooted traditions of solidarity and giving in Africa. The 2012 Assembly was shaped by the appreciation
of the need to grow and respond to the development challenges of the African continent, by utilizing the assembly as an
inquest platform and space for debating the texture and forms of African Philanthropy.
It offered the possibility of a re-energized African community of philanthropic and social investment practice, and
enabled an inclusive, innovative, and interactive engagement of all grantmakers and social investors together, scanning
the diverse terrain of philanthropy in Africa to identify new trends, showcase emerging practices and exciting innovations
as well as craft a shared agenda to build the field in a changing context. Click here for the 2012 AGN Assembly.
Social investment avenues and inherent capacity for asset building in the community in Africa were some of the issues
debated, as seen in social capital and demonstration of social cohesion (with examples of, among others, Ubuntu, Harambee,
Humanism, Community Societies, Village Banks, Burial Societies, Rotating Savings and Credit Associations).