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Founder’s Address

Founder’s Address

There is no doubt that significant progress has been made in under-developed and developing countries in Africa to ensure survival and sustainable development.

However, current projections show that by 2030, 88% of the world’s poorest people (about 414 million people) are expected to live in Africa.

Indeed, if current trends persist, by 2030, the top ten poorest countries in the world will all be African— both in absolute terms and as a percentage of the total population, the share of the extreme poor. In total, the number of poor people living in Africa is now increasing by five per minute.

Black African Rehabilitating Foundation BARF believes there is an urgent need to shift our focus to children, youths, women, and local communities.

In recent years, calls for investment in children and young people have increased dramatically. Countries have unanimously concluded that policies which help young people fulfil their potential also drive economic development.

The education, health, social justice and employment sectors still face a lot of challenges. About 20 per cent of elementary school students in Africa drop out before they finish class five. We must ensure that all children finish their primary education and go to high school. There is a need for additional efforts to enable girls to believe that they can do everything boys can.

Two out of every five young Africans are unemployed, uneducated or unskilled. The unemployment rates in Africa are quite high (23.8 percent estimated in 2016, with a 3 percentage point increase between 2014 and 2015 and a steady increase since 2007) and are projected to remain high over the next five years. BARF is committed to reduce unemployment in Africa through skill acquisition, trainings and empowerment programmes. Our goal should be to create adaptable learners who are capable of reengineering their own skills and capacities in disrupted economies

Political instability and conflict leave young people vulnerable to violence, disrupts their education and access to basic health care services and, in many cases, causes psychological traumas. We must step up efforts to protect children and young people against violence, drug abuse, conflict and poverty so that they can lead more productive lives and contribute to society.

Numbers do not equal influence. While the number of women in positions of leadership may have increased, women do not necessarily have greater power. In 2014, Africa lost up to $ 105 billion from gender gaps in labour markets alone, nearly 6% of all output.

Almost 7 out of 10 African women are in the workforce compared to almost 6 out of 10 in North America, 5 out of 10 in Europe, Asia and the Pacific. However, many are involved in informal, low- paid and low- productive work, with 76% outside the formal non- agricultural sector, compared with 59% for men.

BARF is dedicated to the equalization of workplace opportunities, the elimination of exclusion and the removal of barriers to women’s access to productive assets which would increase life choices for both men and women and transform Africa. Equal representation of women and men in the labour force, equal access to paid work and equal productivity could increase Africa’s GDP by 3% to 16% and countries with greater gender gaps have the most to benefit. This is a definitely better way to reduce unemployment, reduce poverty, promote sustainable development and build good governance.

Salmat AbdulmuminFounder
Black Africa Rehabilitating Foundation (B.A.R.F)