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A screenshot of some of the participants of the digital empowerment programme/Photo: Zentralrat

Zentralrat digitally empowers African associations in Germany

The Zentralrat der afrikanischen Gemeinde in Deutschland (Central Council of the African Community in Germany or ZAGD) is currently running a digital training programme for individuals and associations in the African community.

The initiative, tagged ‘Setting the future right through digital empowerment’, especially seeks to equip associations with digital skills to enhance their administrative capacity.

Akinola Famson, a member of the Zentralrat’s board, said the idea of the programme was born during the corona crisis, when many companies and organisations had to resort to remote working and virtual meeting to remain in operation.

“We had to cancel some of our activities and resort to virtual communication such as zoom meeting as we couldn’t meet physically due to the lockdown measures,” Mr Famson narrated.

Teaching participants how to organise online seminars (webinars)

 

“After the relaxation of the measures, we decided to explore the integration of digital platforms into our operations for greater efficiency,” he added.

The organisation has now realised that its future plans would be heavily influenced by this unique experience.

As an umbrella organisation for African associations in Germany, Zentralrat decided to start a training programme to avail its constituency the benefit of its experience.

Under the programme, Zentralrat would like to help improve the digital skills of African associations, to make them more efficient in carrying out their activities.

Participants at the ongoing program are expected to act as multipliers in their various spheres of influence, thereby spreading the knowledge they have acquired in the wider African community.

The training programme, which is in a pilot phase, is being developed to become a veritable tool for community work such as for mentoring, counselling, coaching and offering advisory services.

“Many of our African associations regularly engage in counselling members or providing information to the general African public; employing this digital platform will definitely enhance their operational capacity,” Mr Famson explains.

“I belong to several associations and we regularly meet physically which entails travelling. We can forego some of the meetings by deliberating remotely, saving time and travel costs,” he explained.

The Zentralrat’s initiative, once again, proves the saying that in every crisis lies opportunities.

Sola Jolaoso

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