How are Africa’s youths innovating and improving society? What stories do they have to tell? And, with over 70 per cent of the continent falling under the age of 30, how can the leaders in the world’s youngest continent ensure it gets the best of its most valuable resource – its young?
The Climb, a new podcast produced by Nigerian-based Channels TV in partnership with the Firoz Lalji Institute for Africa (FLIA) at LSE, aims to answer these questions, providing a platform for African youth to tell their own stories, with the aim of combating the brain drain currently impacting Africa.
Showcasing some of Africa’s most promising young talent – at home and throughout the diaspora – the new bi-weekly podcast will tell extraordinary stories of youths across Africa and African youths in the diaspora, celebrating the ways they are helping shape the world, exploring their motivations, the challenges they have had to overcome and the ways they are deploying their skills and knowledge towards the growth and development of the continent.
One of the key issues facing Africa today is brain drain – the exodus of young talent to other continents -an issue addressed by producer and co-presenter Jewel Atedou Bright at the podcast’s launch event. He said: “Africa has by far the most young people than anywhere on earth, and these young people hold the key to unlocking the continent’s future. With every university admissions season in Europe and America, the continent loses some of these youths, who in most cases never intend to return. Our podcast will strive to encourage more African youths in the diaspora to engage with the continent.
“The Climb Podcast will tell real stories of African youths - their mind-blowing achievements, as well as some of the challenges they face as they strive to grow and develop themselves, their respective countries and the continent as a whole. It is my hope that the themes and subtle messages of this podcast filer through to relevant authorities across Africa, alerting them to the immense potential of the youths and the need to create an environment where the young can thrive.”
Professor Tim Allen, Director of the Firoz Lalji Institute for Africa, also addressed the audience, saying: “The connection between the LSE and Africa is very strong and getting stronger. This kind of podcast is a whole new arena for communication, and it’s engagement with young people and collaborative production ethos are important aspects of this initiative.”
The collaboration between the FLIA at LSE and Channels TV was celebrated by Firoz Lalji, whose endowment created the Institute at LSE, who said: “LSE has had a legacy of creating African leaders that includes six presidents. Our goal is to create a new generation of African leaders that will impact social, economic and political development of Africa. Climb Podcast will reach millions of people in Africa and around the world in the diaspora. This is a great opportunity for the youths of Africa to tell their stories and issues that concern them.”
Channels TV Chairman John Momoh said: “The world that we live in today faces more significant challenges than the one I grew up in. So much more than ever, we need that youthful energy - the ingenuity, courage and passion to face up to the profound challenges that we face and to proffer creative solutions to them. Here lies the significance of the Climb Podcast, which will be celebrating young Africans at home and in the diaspora who have summoned up the courage to take up these challenges.”
The Climb’s first episode tells the story of 16 year old John, whose dedication and passion for tech has taken him beyond his Nigerian roots, and the African continent to become an internationally celebrated child genius. John's Story is now available on all major podcast platforms, including Spotify.
Visit FLIA's website for more on the FLIA-Channels TV collaboration.