“Becoming part of the Ashinaga family has been life-changing. Not only has Ashinaga enabled me to achieve my aspirations of studying Medicine to help vulnerable people, but it helped me to become a strong woman who is not afraid to chase her dreams to create a better world”
Our leadership program develops Scholars into future leaders of their communities, in order to contribute to sub-Saharan Africa’s development through grassroots, people-led change.
At the heart of Ashinaga is a “pay it forward” mentality, whereby those who have benefited from access to education work to share that benefit with others. Our work is focused on empowering Scholars to make change themselves, paying forward benefits to improve the lives of as many people as possible.
How We Work
Ashinaga UK is divided into five overlapping categories of work:
We support the Scholars on every step of their academic and leadership journey, beginning with their preparation year in Africa (Uganda or Senegal) and continuing through their undergraduate degrees with frequent meetings with an assigned Student Relation Team member for updates and guidance. Our goal is for the Scholars to get the most out of their university experience, building programs to develop their academic, professional personal skills.
We build relationships with universities across the UK, creating joint scholarships with some of the best universities in the country. We also work with universities to strengthen their understanding of the context from which our students have come and to support our program in other ways.
Professional Network and Career Development
The Professional Network and Career Development Team have two roles. First, to develop programs to cultivate professional skills in AAI Scholars, and second, to build relationships with organisations across the world, focusing on ones in Africa, for internship and recruitment opportunities for Scholars.
Our fundraising team is focused on building relationships, awareness and much needed support to ensure the long-term sustainability of our work.
We work to make our operation as effective and efficient as possible, ensuring that as much time as possible is spent on the work that has the greatest impact. Our comprehensive Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning system allows us to track the impact of our work so that we can refine it and ensure it is being delivered as cost-effectively as possible.
“Being a part of the AAI program has contributed greatly towards both my professional and personal development. It has granted me opportunities which I would have otherwise struggled to even access considering my background that was not very financially supportive. Most importantly, it has allowed me to view my continent Africa as not a harbour of problems, rather as a centre of ample possibilities waiting impatiently to be activated.”
The Ashinaga Africa Initiative is already having a demonstrable impact. Ashinaga UK has become the largest recruiting provider of undergraduate scholarships to students from sub-Saharan Africa in the UK. We recruit from 48 of the 49 sub-Saharan African countries. Many of these countries are under-represented in the UK and we are supporting two of the 20 students from Lesotho, two of the 15 students from Benin, and the only student from the Central African Republic currently in UK higher education. In 2019 our first Scholars graduated from their undergraduate courses and are preparing to begin their work as compassionate leaders for Africa. Find out more about how we measure our impact.
Interested in joining us empower young people to change their communities? We’d love to hear from you.