Boosting development in Africa

作者:Gui Qian
【导读】Chinese young man helps African people connect to the world 中国青年帮助非洲年轻人做“网红”
Zhu Qing (center) visits the African Wildlife Foundation. PROVIDED TO TEENS
Five years ago, when Zhu Qing was 28, he paid a visit to Africa. While there he discovered the beauty of the land as well as the difficulties the local youth were facing - educational, economic and environmental problems.

As a global affairs and international peace studies major, Zhu did field research at more than 10 non-governmental organizations (NGOs), national forest parks, governments and companies in six African countries including Kenya, Uganda and South Africa. He then decided to help solve these real-world problems by setting up a consulting firm called Pumbaa Eco.

“Whether it is a government, an NGO or an individual, they cannot solve all the social problems on their own. Many gaps can be filled by business power, in an efficient and sustainable way,” said Zhu.

Pumbaa Eco started plenty of projects to empower young African people and promote cultural exchange. The Africa True Story is a project that aims to draw the public’s eye to Africa and help African content creators. More than 100 young journalists, environmentalists, scholars and business workers in Africa have taken part in it.

They have written articles and research reports and made videos about their lives or related social issues. Some of their works were posted on platforms like Toutiao, Wechat, The Paper and the IFeng website. Some works were sold to companies so these young people can make money as well as express themselves.

Pumbaa Eco has also worked with African Wildlife Foundation to hold wildlife protection forums, and organized dance and music classes as well as soccer competitions for kids in slum areas. Now they are working to build an international volunteer center in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya.

“The center will open this spring. It will be a space for youth from across the world to communicate and a platform for sharing all kinds of projects,” explained Zhu. “More young Chinese people can connect to Africa more easily, too, whether through ecological research trips, ecotourism or volunteering experience.”
“I myself have achieved a sense of self-fulfillment through my work. I hope my work can help more young people, from both China and Africa, to live their lives to the fullest,” Zhu added.

By GUI QIAN, 21st Century Teens


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