ONE hosts event as African leaders meet

Photo credit: White House

Photo credit: White House

On August 4-6, dozens of African heads-of-state are coming to Washington, DC to meet President Obama and US officials as part of the first US-African Leaders Summit.

When US and African leaders meet, it will be against a backdrop of a continent transforming at breakneck speed. Six of the world’s 10 fastest growing economies are in Africa. The rate of foreign investment in Africa has jumped ten-fold in the past decade. A bulge of better-educated young people of working age is entering the job market and birth rates are beginning to decline.

Despite the progress, Africa still faces enormous challenges. Most citizens live on less than $2 a day, and the average lifespan in some countries is under 50. Preventable disease, hunger, thirst, and extreme poverty persist in too many places. Poor infrastructure like bad roads and inadequate electricity generation and supply are severely hampering the continent’s vast economic potential.

On August 4th, ONE will be hosting a series of events at The Newseum in Washington, DC to coincide with the US-African Leaders Summit.

The 19 African artists from ONE's Cocoa Na Chocolate music collaboration. 6 of them will be in DC for the Summit.

The 19 African artists from ONE’s Cocoa Na Chocolate music collaboration. 6 of them will be in DC for the Summit.

The centerpiece is a late night concert featuring performances from some of Africa’s top young musicians from ONE’s Do Agric Campaign, which spurred over 2 million citizens from across the continent to use their voices and demand that their leaders support smart, effective agricultural development policy that will help lift 85 million Africans out of poverty. These young artists embody the spirit, passion and potential of Africa’s future. Artists include: D’Banj (Nigeria), Fally Ipupa (DRC), Victoria Kimani (Kenya), AY (Tanzania), Judith Sephuma (South Africa), Femi Kuti (Nigeria), Buffalo Souljah (Zimbabwe), and Wax Dey (Cameroon).

In the afternoon, Yaya Toure, the Manchester City soccer striker from the Ivory Coast and one of the most famous athletes on earth, will join D’Banj and honored guests for a strategy session with a group of young American government professionals from the US State Department’s Young African Leader’s Initiative.

And in the morning, ONE is honored to host a top US and African official for a public conversation about the role of agriculture in realizing Africa’s economic potential. We will crowd source questions from our Do Agric petition signers and ONE members in Africa and the US. Stay tuned to ONE.org for more details.

We are so excited to be involved in this historic conference!

To learn more about the White House’s 2014 US-Africa Leaders Summit, visit  the event page on the White House’s website. It includes the program of events, ways to stay engaged, and additional resources.