April 27, 2011

3rd Annual Service Learning Trip With USC Students Set For July 2011

This summer, as part of our service-learning volunteer trips initiative, AGYA will welcome several student volunteers from the University of Southern California. This is the third year that AGYA has hosted students from USC through a strategic partnership with RAYSE (Rise of African Youth through Self Empowerment). These ambitious college students will spend 4 weeks living and working at the AGYA Community Learning Center in Nabulagala. They will teach daily classes and workshops at AGYA's Community Center, volunteer at an elementary school and a local orphanage, undergo intensive Luganda language training, participate in cultural excursions, and collaborate with student leaders from Makerere University, Uganda's premiere 4-year degree granting institution of higher education.

The students, profiled here, all come from all different backgrounds and academic majors. In Uganda, they will teach a variety of workshops including: dance, film, music recording and production, storytelling.

Bijou Nguyen

Bijou is a freshman at USC majoring in History. In her free time, she likes taking pictures, hanging out with friends and family, laughing, traveling and meeting new people. She is looking forward to a month full of adventures and fun! She is the oldest of four and she loves animals. At AGYA, Bijou will work collaboratively with AGYA youth leader, Mathias Sseremba, to teach a visual arts class.

April 20, 2011

Youth Voices: Juma Kawesi On How His Fellow Youth, Kawera Enoch Introduced Him to AGYA

My name is Kawesi Juma. I am a 19 year old b-boy and I do breakdancing at AGYA. Last year, I was a Youth Leader in charge of the Free Lunch Program. Right now, I am the Assistant Facilitator of the b-boy class.

Above: A short clip of Juma practicing his dance moves

April 11, 2011

Top 10 Ways to Support AGYA

We often get asked, how can I help? How can I support AGYA? Well, in March, we counted down via our Facebook and Twitter pages the top 10 ways you can support AGYA. Here are the top 10 ways you can support counted down again!

1. Make a donation here: http://www.stayclassy.org/charity/agya-international/c5297 OR visit our Blog and click the yellow donate link in the right sidebar OR mail a check to AGYA International, 1620 Centinela Ave, Suite 303, Inglewood CA 90302 USA

2. Become an International Volunteer, travel to Uganda and teach workshops with children or youth! We have hosted more than 60 volunteers from 5 countries...could you be next? Get more details here: http://amagezigemaanyi.blogspot.com/p/volunteer.html

3. Donate your airline miles! We can accept miles from every airline, including Delta, American Airlines, Emirates, British Airways, Turkish Airlines, KLM, Ethiopian Airlines, and more

4. Volunteer your professional skills for GOOD by becoming an AGYA Intern in one of the following areas: Accounting, Grant-writing/Research, Fundraising, Graphic Design, and Curriculum Development. Interns can work remotely & must commit to 10 weeks. Interested? E-mail resume & cover letter to AGYA Executive Director, Divinity Barkley Matovu at divinity@agyainternational.org

5. Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/agya_africa If you are already following us, shout us out with an @agya_africa mention so we can build our Twitter fan base

AGYA Co-Founders Attend TOMS Shoes "One Day Without Shoes" on 5 April 2011

On 5 April 2011, AGYA Co-Founders Abraham Matovu and Divinity Barkley Matovu participated in "One Day Without Shoes," the global awareness-raising event hosted by TOMS Shoes, a for-profit company that uses an innovative one-to-one business model. For every shoe TOMS sells, the company gives a new pair of shoes to a child in need. One Day Without Shoes challenges TOMS customers to take off their shoes for a day in order to raise awareness about kids all over the world who cannot afford shoes. 

Divinity and Abraham decided to participate in the event after learning about it from former AGYA volunteer, Joey Borgogna, a TOMS customer. 

Above: Divinity and Abraham with Joey shoeless on 5 April 2011. 

Youth Voices: AGYA Co-Founder Matovu Abraham Attends Clinton Global Initiative University Conference in San Diego

AGYA Country Director and Co-Founder, Abraham Matovu, attended the Clinton Global Initiative University (CGIU) Meeting in San Diego, California during the weekend of April 1-3, 2011. 

Hosted at the University of California at San Diego by Former U.S. President, Bill Clinton, the conference highlighted 5 areas: education, energy & climate change, global health, peace & human rights, and poverty alleviation. President Clinton emphasized the importance young people to develop and implement innovative, sustainable solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges (http://www.cgiu.org/).

At the Conference, Abraham had the unique opportunity to network, share, and learn from global youth activists and college students from the United States and more than 90 other nations. Abraham attended sessions on grassroots community engagement and education: pathways and opportunities for adolescents. 

April 3, 2011

AGYA Co-Founders Give Keynote Address at MIAD's Service Learning Symposium, Radio Interview at WUMM 89.7

On March 25, 2011, AGYA Co-Founders Abraham Matovu and Divinity Barkley Matovu were honored to give the keynote address at the 10th Annual Service Learning Symposium hosted by the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD).

Divinity and Abraham (pictured above at MIAD) spoke to community leaders, campus administrators, and students with majors ranging from photography to sculpture and design. As MIAD's first keynote speakers with an international focus, Divinity and Abraham discussed how AGYA is using the arts to economically and artistically empower young people in urban Uganda. The presentation also highlighted the interconnectedness of passion and community service. 

AGYA Executive Director Visits Ethiopia - Conducts Informal Needs Assessment With Urban Youth

From March 21-23, 2011, AGYA Co-Founder and Executive Director, Divinity Barkley Matovu, visited Ethiopia where she met with several youth living in Addis Ababa, the urban capital of Ethiopia. While there, Divinity was hosted by 28 year old Robel Alawi, a native of Harar, Ethiopia who works part-time as a travel guide for international visitors. Robel also works with an organization that provides basic care for orphans, street children, and homeless youth who live in abject poverty in Addis Ababa.