#AfricansRising for justice, peace & dignity

‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’ – African proverb

Bonnections launched this spring a new event series to spread the word about the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) and bring together local and global actors and change makers.

On May 25, we will to turn our eyes to the African continent in celebration of Africa Day (formerly called African Unity or African Liberation Day). In partnership with AfricansRising, we like to invite you to a cross-cultural exploration and colorful evening with live music, poetry, dance, soul food and lots of Ubuntu spirit.

The P, a female rap singer of Congolese decent, the multicultural Bonnafrika band and newcomers from Nigeria and Eritrea will provide entertainment on the evening. The stage is open for everyone who wants to perform or show something (7-8 pm). Everyone is welcome to join the AfricansRising satellite event at BonnLAB (7 to 10 pm, Zingsheimstr. 2, Bonn-Beuel). The event is free. Please bring beverages & African food, if you can.

On 25 May, there will be a series of actions and events across the African continent to mark the launch of the #AfricansRising for Justice, Peace and Dignity campaign. AfricansRising is a new African-wide social and environmental movement that aims to bring a voice to the younger generation and to finish the journey of African liberation by fighting for social inclusion, climate justice, shared prosperity, women and human rights and against corruption and impunity.

In the lead-up to the COP23 UN climate conference in Bonn, we want to focus our discussion and intercultural exchange on climate justice and the intersection of climate change, conflict and migration.

Organizers are asking people to wear a piece of RED on May 25 as a symbolic color that unites the various peaceful mobilisations taking place in more than 30 countries across the continent.

#WearRED on #25May2017

As part of its launch, AfricansRising will host a co-curated healing and visioning program on Gorée Island, off the coast of Senegal, together with key partners and supporters from the youth, arts, faith based and gender movements.

“For Africans from the continent and the Diaspora, it is significant that we gather at a site that is a symbol of our brutal past in order to affirm our commitment to peace, justice and dignity and to build the future we want,” says AfricansRising coordinator Muhammed Lamin Siadykhan.

At the Bonn satellite event, local rap singer “Die P” (aka Patrice) will release her new song “Mama Africa”. The 27-year old Congolese musician was born in Bonn and grew up in Tannenbusch.

Kumi Naidoo, a South African human rights activist and former head of Greenpeace International, is the launch director of AfricansRising. He presented the new movement at the  Global Festival of Ideas for Sustainable Develpment in Bonn in early March, calling on Africans across the continent and in the Diaspora to pledge their support for the Kilimanjaro declaration.

People can join the AfricansRising movement by signing the Kilimanjaro Declaration

The conference was the kick-off of the global UN SDG Action Campaign. The SDG Campaign Center is the newest addition to the UN family in Bonn and located in the historic Haus Carstanjen in Bonn-Plittersdorf. Featuring 139 speakers from public institutions, organisations, companies, NGOs, working in diverse range of sectors, the 3-day festival addressed key global challenges: globalization and inequalities, resource efficiency and green economy, and disruptions in development.

Bonnections spoke with Kumi Naidoo, one of the SDG  festival of ideas speakers, about the new African-wide movement that will officially launch on May 25th (Africa Day).

In the podcast interview Naidoo explains the goals and historical context of the new civil society initiative that aims to build unity and finish the journey of African liberation by putting the younger generation at its center. He says the movement seeks a new approach to sustainable development, because the majority of the people on the continent don’t feel liberated and free.

He also talked about the digital and technical divide and main reasons for the mass migration of young Africans to the global North.

The African Risings movement is a self-selecting collective of NGOs, social justice and environmental movements, intellectuals, artists and activists and inspired by the non-violent civil rights movement and the Arab spring.

In his view African governments and the global development sector are too obsessed with big infrastructure projects and should focus more on small scale technology projects to lift people out of poverty, such as decentralized solar power systems. Neither could every social problem be solved with social entrepreneurship. “Development is fundamentally contextual. If we ignore that fact we’re on our own peril,” he says.





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