“Why the obsession with Europe when we are African?”
That was the question that was keeping Farai Mubaiwa up at night.
In 2015, she was incensed when the media and politicians paid more attention to a terrorist attack in France than they did to a similar attack in Nigeria. This, coupled with her sadness about ongoing xenophobic attacks in South Africa, inspired her to initiate Africa Matters.
Africa Matters is an NGO that “aims to change the African narrative by providing spaces for critical engagement amongst Africans,” says Mubaiwa, who also works as a financial analyst at Deloitte. Now her team of 25, with branches in the Western Cape, Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Nairobi, works with other NGOs, universities and private companies to host workshops, summits, and leadership programmes, reaching hundreds of Africa’s youth.
Mubaiwa is no stranger to taking action. During her student days at Stellenbosch University, she headed the Student Representative Council’s Woman Empowerment portfolio, working tirelessly to create awareness around rape culture.
Thanks to her efforts, the university management created a rape culture task-team. Mubaiwa has since teamed up with an academic and group of student leaders to write a book about the subject.
Unsurprisingly, she was named one of the Queen’s Young Leaders for 2017, an accolade she richly deserves.
|The hardest lesson I learnt is that not everyone cares about changing the world or making space for people who are marginalised.|