Philanthropy's Role in
Mitigating Inequality in Africa
Inequality is a global problem, but in Africa, it is hitting unprecedented heights. Forbes lists for the globe’s wealthiest people includes more and more Africans every year, but reports suggest that people living under the poverty line has gone up. Questions have been directed towards wealthy Africans because they are seen to not be as philanthropic as their Western counterparts. This panel will look to explore why this is and how philanthropy, in all its forms, can help reduce social and economic inequality. Recently, the number of foundations and initiatives by Africans, for Africans has been on the rise, but there is still a lot of room for employment. Panelists will discuss their own roles, why it is important and how we can encourage more people to get involved.
The panel’s aim is not to present philanthropy as the remedy to inequality, but rather, to have a frank conversation about inequality and philanthropy, and how they could interact with each other.
chair: mwihaki muraguri
Mwihaki Muraguri is a seasoned professional in the area of development and philanthropy. Over the course of her profession she has worked in philanthropic institutions such as the Rockefeller Foundation, where she led the foundations work in health and philanthropy in Africa, and with the KCB Foundation, one of Kenya’s first corporate foundations working across East Africa. In addition, she spent several years in the area of HIV and AIDS service delivery with Amref Health Africa, Africa’s largest homegrown health NGO. Currently Ms Muraguri is an independent advisor where she continues to support the philanthropic sector most notably through documentation and advisory services.
In May 2016 Stephan Chambers took up the post of inaugural director of the Marshall Institute for Philanthropy and Social Entrepreneurship at the LSE. The Marshall Institute is committed to increasing the impact of private contributions to public benefit through teaching, research, and convening. Prior to Marshall Stephan was the co-founder of the Skoll World Forum and chair of the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship and Director of International Strategy at Oxford’s Saїd Business School, and Senior Research Fellow at Lincoln College Oxford. He sits on the advisory board of Princeton University Press and is a director of the Britdoc Foundation, the Dartington Trust, the University of the People, and the Dragon School.
Onyekachi Wambu is Executive Director at the African Foundation for Development (AFFORD); a charity that seeks to enhance the contributions that Africans in the diaspora make to Africa’s development. He was educated at the University of Essex and completed his M.Phil in International Relations at Selwyn College, Cambridge. Before AFFORD, he worked extensively as a journalist and television documentary maker. He edited The Voice Newspaper at the end of the 1980s and has made documentaries and programmes for the BBC, Channel 4 and PBS. He has written widely on Africa and her global diaspora; his publications include Under the Tree of Talking: Leadership for Change in Africa (ed) and Empire Windrush: 50 years of writing about black Britain (ed).
Yvonne L. Moore brings over 25 years of experience in the government, civil society, and philanthropic sectors. Prior to launching Moore Philanthropy, Ms. Moore was the Chief of Staff to U.S. filmmaker and philanthropist Abigail E. Disney where she oversaw the family’s network of media, philanthropic and advocacy organizations. With the creation of her firm, Ms. Moore expanded her international work advising families and individuals on their giving in the Eastern U.S. and Sub-Saharan Africa, and has successfully co-developed projects in the most challenging of environments, including post-conflict and slum communities, and most recently the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Liberia.
Thione Niang currently leads three international organizations: GIVE1PROJECT, TNG (ThioneNiang Group), and Akon Lighting Africa and Solektra Interational. In particular, he co-founded Akon Lighting Africa and Solektra International along with the renowned artist Akon and Malien Businessman Samba Bathily in 2014. The mission was to provide electricity to 600 million African households and communities through sustainable solar energy. Today, 16 countries benefit from the initiative and more than 5000 jobs have been created across the continent. By 2015, Thione Niang was appointed by President Obama as the Ambassador to the US Ministry of Energy. Thione advocates for inclusion of minorities in all aspects of the energy sector, with a special focus on energy economic development, STEM education, and climate change.