A future of infinite possibilities
Dreamweavers; a word that traditionally has no meaning, but in actuality signifies the point of intersection between unbridled aspiration, and tangible activity. A space that calls for introspection; interlacing our hopes, fears and ideas. A meeting point for all those who share intellectual curiousity about Africa. A future built without borders, put together by our dreams.
In our 9th year, we ask you to leave behind labels, extend your imagination and come ready to be stimulated by speakers who are weavers of dreams.
Omar Degan is a Somali-Italian Architect. He is the Principal and Founder of DO Architecture and Design , an architecture firm based in Mogadishu, specialised in sustainability, emergency architecture and post-conflict reconstruction.
Born in 1990, Degan holds a BA in Architecture, an Msc (Hons) in Architecture for Sustainability and a potsgraduate degree in Habitat and Cooperation - Emergency architecture and developing countries.
His passion for serving the most vulnerable populations led him to establish a firm in the capital city of Somalia devoted to supporting the post conflict reconstruction process through the use of architecture.
SVP SR at Viacom International Media Networks
Georgia Arnold is the Senior Vice President of Social Responsibility at Viacom International Media Networks. Responsible for developing social initiatives for the company’s portfolio of over two hundred TV channels and websites, Georgia has initiated unprecedented partnerships and campaigns for MTV on HIV and AIDS awareness, as well as for Nickelodeon on children’s rights.
Since its launch in 1988, she has been overseeing the Staying Alive Campaign and was instrumental in establishing the MTV Staying Alive Foundation, a global charitable body that provides grants to grassroots, youth-led organisations to set up HIV and AIDS awareness campaigns in their communities. A particular highlight of Ms. Arnold’s career is her involvement with the multi award-winning MTV Shuga – a 360-degree mass-media HIV prevention campaign with a worldwide viewership of over 720 million people (and which discovered the Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o).
In 2013, MTV Breaks was born – Georgia’s latest international initiative to inspire and give real life opportunities to the next generation of creative talent around the world.
Dr Claire Karekezi is a Specialist Neurosurgeon. Born and raised in Rwanda, Claire completed her Clinical Fellowship in Neuro-Oncology & Skull Base Surgery at the University of Toronto in 2018 and returned to Rwanda as the country's first and only female neurosurgeon.
Over the course of her training, Claire has received several awards, including a 2013 American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) award, a Women In Neurosurgery (WINS) award, a Greg Wilkins-Barrick Chair Visiting International Surgeon Award, the 2016 American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) International Visiting Surgeon Fellowship in Neurosurgery/Neuro-Oncology, amongst others.
She hopes to inspire young women to pursue neurosurgery.
Salooni is a Ugandan multidisciplinary arts collective made up of four talented Ugandan women. At TEDxEuston 2018 Dreamweavers, Aida Holly-Nambi and Darlyne Komukama will take centre stage to represent the collective. Aida is the director of Arts and Culture for an Africa-wide LGBT digital media organization, None on Record, where among other projects, she produces the podcast, AfroQueer. Darlyne is a self-taught photographer and installation artist. Her photographs are full of regal, statuesque black women and exhort a return to the natural world. Her work has appeared on CNN, BBC, The Guardian, Quartz and OkayAfrica.
Writer and Actress
Lebo Mashile is an award-winning writer, spoken word artist, presenter, actress and activist A household name in South Africa, Lebo has performed in over 24 countries, won a NOMA Award and has, among other things, just released her second studio album, Moya, in collaboration with singer/songwriter Majola. In February, she debuted a theatre piece on Saartjie Baartman.
Human & Civil rights Activist
Hafsat Abiola-Costello is a human and civil rights campaigner and was appointed the Executive President of Women in Africa (WIA) Initiative in June 2018. She is the Founder of the Kudirat Initiative for Democracy (KIND), which seeks to strengthen civil society and promote democracy in Nigeria. In 2008 she founded the China Africa Bridge (CAB), an organisation that works to ensure that Sino-African ties are mutually beneficial. Hafsat has won many prizes for her work including the World Forum’s Change Maker award in 1998 and the World Economic Forum’s Global Leader of Tomorrow Award 2000.
Founder of MELCA
Million Belay is the founder of MELCA – Ethiopia, an indigenous NGO working on issues of agro-ecology, intergenerational learning, advocacy and livelihood improvement of local and indigenous peoples. He is also a researcher in food systems transformation at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, coordinates the Alliance for Food Sovereignty for Africa, a network of networks of major networks in Africa and is a member of the International Panel of Experts on the Sustainable of Food Systems (IPES-Food).
Million has been working for over two decades on the issues of intergenerational learning of bio-cultural diversity, sustainable agriculture, the right of local communities for seed and food sovereignty and forest issues. His main interest is now advocacy on food sovereignty, learning among generations, knowledge dialogues and the use of participatory mapping for social learning, identity building and mobilization of memory for resilience.
Iyinoluwa Aboyeji is an impact entrepreneur with a passion for building the future of Africa. He’s spent the past 8 years building ventures in the education, technology, youth employment, publishing and finance spaces. He led Imprint Publications, one of Canada’s largest student-owned publishing houses, as President of the Board in 2010, and he helped found and run Bookneto Inc, a social e-learning platform, acquired in 2013 by the Canadian Innovation Centre. In 2014, He co-founded Andela to find and prepare the brightest young people in Africa to become the continent’s next generation of technology leaders through deep immersive remote-work experience with companies like Facebook, IBM, Microsoft and Google amongst others. He left Andela to co-found Flutterwave, a payments technology company connecting Africa to the global economy.
Founder of Identity School of Acting
Femi Oguns, MBE, is a former actor and agent. Oguns' passion to create a platform which would give actors of all ethnicities the platform to express themselves to their fullest led to the establishment of the Identity School of Acting and Identity Agency Group in October 2003.
In 2010, Oguns was named a UK Film Council Breakthrough Brit in the fields of Acting and Writing. He also made Powerful Media's Power List of the top 100 most influential figures of African/Caribbean descent. In 2017 he became the first agent in the UK to be awarded with a special jury prize by the British Independent Film Award (Bifa) for his contribution to the British Film Industry.
CEO and co-founder of Matibabu
Brian Gitta is an entrepreneur with a computer science background interested in using design thinking, machine learning and artificial intelligence to create solutions to the world’s hardest problems – starting with those in African communities. He is the CEO and co-founder of Matibabu, a company that offers a non-invasive malaria diagnosis kit. Matibabu has won a host of different awards including the UN Empowerment Award and The Aspirin Social Innovation Award. Brian most recently won the Royal Academy of Engineering Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation for the work he and his team have done at Matibabu.
Founder of Shule Direct
Faraja Nyalandu, born and raised in Tanzania is a resourceful social entrepreneur. She has degrees in law but has dedicated herself to her passion: developing cutting edge social and educational programs that empower youth and children. A member of the World Economic Forum’s Expert Network, she has served on the Global Future Council for Education, Gender and Work.
In 2013, she established Shule Direct which provides comprehensive web and mobile educational platforms (offering learning content across multiple subjects) to over a million in and out of school youth. In 2016, Faraja won the Tanzania Leadership Awards’ Hall of Fame Woman of the Year Award. In 2017, she was awarded a 2017 System Innovator award by Segal Family Foundation for systemic change in digital learning in Secondary School education in Tanzania, and in 2018 was named as one of 100 Most Influential Young Africans.
The Compozers are a four-piece band from North London, known for producing live arrangements and renditions of hit songs. With no lead singer in the forefront, the audience is invited to become the fifth member in a unique musical experience. They’ve worked with an impressive array of international artists including J Hus (with whom they worked on his chart topping album, Common Sense) Wizkid, Davido and Mr Eazi. A Night With The Compozers, their annual headline concert typically attracts an audience of over three thousand people, in some of London’s most iconic gigging venues including the O2 Shepards Bush Empire and the Roundhouse in Camden.
Nana Oforiatta Ayim
Nana Oforiatta Ayim is a writer, filmmaker and art historian. She is one of the leading ambassadors of African contemporary art and is the founder of the non-profit arts institution ANO Institute of Arts & Knowledge in Accra. Through ANO, she has pioneered a pan-African Cultural Encyclopaedia and a Mobile Museums project that travels and exhibits in communities, creating discourse about narratives, memory and value.
Nana is the recipient of several awards and has been named one of the Apollo ’40 under 40', one of 50 African Trailblazers by The Africa Report, one of 12 African women making history by Okayafrica, and a Quartz Africa Innovator. She has written widely on cultural narratives and institutions in Africa, and is publishing her first novel with Bloomsbury Publishing in 2019.
W. Gyude Moore
Former Liberian government minister
W. Gyude Moore served as Liberia’s Minister of Public Works and country lead on construction and maintenance infrastructure from December 2014 to January 2018. Prior to this, he served as Deputy Chief of Staff to President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and Head of the President’s Delivery Unit. As one of the President’s most trusted advisors, Gyude played a crucial role in supporting President Sirleaf as Liberia shaped its post-Ebola outlook. He is currently a visiting fellow at the Center for Global Development in Washington D.C. and serves on the Board of Advisors of the Master of Science in Foreign Service Program at Georgetown University.
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Join us as we listen to African ideas worth spreading in the heart of London