Celebrating Africa’s digital potential on UN Youth Day

43823806335 2260556d45 zIme Archibong, a vice-president, Product Partnerships at Facebook, said he is excited about how Africa can and will one day lead the digital economy

He added that this not only creates a better future for its youth, but also for people across continents, whether in Africa or elsewhere, such as in Europe or the US.

Archibong revealed that he was inspired by creativity and talent across his home continent, whether creating mobile phone apps that make motorcycle taxis safer and more convenient, such as Safe Motos in Rwanda and now DRC, or building technological solutions to solve agricultural challenges, such as Plantheus.

Adoption of social media, mobile phones and mobile money enables Africa and its youth to leapfrog to the next wave of digital technology. This infrastructure is the foundation on which so much innovation is built in Africa and will be built over the next five years. “At Facebook, we are committed to empowering young people to build their digital skills and harness them for the future - whether they are digital builders, developers or product innovator,” he noted.

In the month of UN Youth Day, Facebook will recognise some of these talents from across the region. “Bringing together more than 40 Facebook Community Leaders, SMBs, Entrepreneurs, Developers and Content Creators from across sub-Saharan Africa, under the banner of ‘Celebrating Icons of Change and the Future of the Continent’ - celebrating the positive impact they are having in their community, something which is important to us here at Facebook,” he added.

With this building on many partnerships, programmes and initiatives already in place to help develop digital and entrepreneurial skills among young people, Facebook’s commitment across the region remains strong.

Whether it’s training SMBs through digital boot camps, helping interested youth to acquire digital marketing skills and placing them in employment, training women in leveraging digital solutions to grow their business, or bringing together 52,000 developers from across 17 countries through the developer circles programme, Archibong said Facebook is excited to play a part in supporting the next generation of start-up founders, investors, developers and change-makers.

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