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Ashley Poutum selected as Delegate of Yale Model African Union

I was fortunate to have been selected as a Delegate for the second iteration of the Yale Model African Union (YMAU) that took place in Kigali, Rwanda from May 12th - 14th, 2023.

The Yale Model African Union is the first-ever Ivy League Model African Union conference, a historic and one-of-a-kind opportunity for students on the continent and across the diaspora to engage in Pan-African dialogue and gain access to world-class workshops, speakers, and sponsors.

We had delegates from all over the African continent and the diaspora and each delegate represented an African Union country and/or an NGO. The leadership development conference combined an emulation of the formal policy-making of the African Union with immersive leadership development workshops that emphasized community-led activism and social entrepreneurship.

I had the opportunity to exchange and interact with experts in fields such as arts, media, healthcare, technology and finance, and everything in between as well as with people who are making a difference on the continent.

We had Vee Kathivhu, an education activist, the young leader of the SDGs at the UN and founder of the initiative, Empowered by Vee, and Papi Wata a Multidisciplinary Artist and Creative based in Senegal amongst other speakers.

I was thrilled and happy to have been part of the Committee on Health, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development chaired by Faith Evanson, in which I engaged in meaningful and insightful discussions that served as an eye-opener to the continent's most pressing challenges, and decision-making geared towards change-making.

This was a one-of-a-kind experience and I can't thank Open Dreams and the Yale Model African Union secretariat enough for the amazing opportunity and experience I had.

- Poutum Ashley | Open Dreams

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