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2024-06-28 ASAF News

Belgium and Botswana: Empowering Youth Mobility

ASAF participated in the launch of the flagship Youth Mobility for Africa Initiative in Brussels and its first cluster meeting in Botswana

Nabawanda Juliet Kasozzi

Global Gateway High-Level Event on Education

On 11 April 2024, the African Students and Alumni Forum (ASAF) joined the Global Gateway High-Level Event on Education in Brussels, Belgium to examine youth empowerment in Africa. The EU presented new regional programmes to enhance youth mobility and skills, emphasising sustainable development and economic empowerment through education.

European Commissioner Jutta Urpilainen highlighted the importance of education and skills training in addressing inequalities and driving economic growth. Initiatives such as the Team Europe Initiative and Africa-Europe Youth Academy aim to provide quality education and foster leadership among African youth. The launch of the Youth Mobility for Africa initiative seeks to increase learning opportunities within Africa and between Africa and the EU, promoting employability and active citizenship among African youth.


First Youth Mobility for Africa Cluster Meeting Sets Course for Future Collaboration

On 3 and 4 June 2024, the inaugural Youth Mobility for Africa (YMFA) Cluster Meeting convened at the University of Botswana in Gaborone, marking a significant step towards enhancing educational opportunities across Africa. Organised under the auspices of the European Union's Global Gateway framework, the event gathered key stakeholders to chart the path forward for youth empowerment through education.

Day One Highlights

The meeting commenced with a robust agenda, featuring insights from speakers including Petra Pereyra from the EU Delegation to Botswana, Sophia Ashipala of the African Union Commission, and Professor David Norris, Vice Chancellor of the University of Botswana.

Discussions centred on the value of international learning mobility and the strategic role of alumni in promoting Africa as a higher education destination.

Key Sessions

Participants engaged in plenary presentations outlining EU initiatives such as the Youth Mobility for Africa Flagship Initiative and the proposed Study in Africa programme. Breakout groups focused on governance structures and thematic priorities, emphasising collaborative frameworks to enhance mobility and educational quality assurance.

Day Two Developments

The second day featured intensive breakout sessions aimed at developing concrete outputs for the YMFA Flagship, set to culminate in the AU-EU Summit in 2025. The discussions underscored the commitment to fostering sustainable partnerships and innovative academic exchanges.

Closing Remarks

Hans Stausboll, of the European Commission, and Sophia Ashipala, of the African Union Commission, delivered closing remarks, affirming their commitment to youth empowerment and educational excellence in Africa.

The YMFA Cluster Meeting concluded with optimism and a renewed dedication to realising the transformative potential of education for Africa's youth. Participants departed with a clear mandate to continue building collaborative frameworks that empower the next generation across the continent.


Botswana International University of Science and Technology

On 5 and 7 June 2024, ASAF joined the vibrant academic environment of the Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST) in Palapye, Botswana. The African Students Academic Forum (ASAF) at BIUST play a pivotal role in fostering community and collaboration among students. Their Intra-Africa Mobility Coordinator hosted a productive exchange of ideas, looking at how to enhance opportunities for academic exchange and cultural integration.

One of the key highlights at BIUST included the mobilisation of recipients of EU-funded mobility scholarships under Erasmus and Intra-Africa Mobility Scholarship programme which later enrolled into the ASAF community portal.

Additionally, BIUST's International Office facilitated interactions between Intra-Africa Mobility Scholarship recipients and beneficiaries of the prestigious Erasmus scholarships. This initiative provided a platform for sharing experiences and insights, reinforcing BIUST's commitment to internationalisation and academic excellence.

These interactions not only enrich the academic journey of students but also contribute to building a robust network of future leaders poised to make significant contributions to their communities and beyond.


Nabawanda Juliet Kasozzi
Uganda, Kampala
19 June 2024

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