The Programme for African Leadership is an extra-curricular programme focused on leadership development and networking, available exclusively to graduate students of African nationality currently studying at the School.
Ubuntu Café - 12th October 2023
To celebrate Black History Month we'd like to invite you to the Ubuntu Cafe a celebration of African culture, diversity, and heritage. The theme for this edition is Roots, Bridges, and Echoes: Reclaiming our Stories. Join us for an evening with amazing performances including spoken word, storytelling, music, and the book launch of “Conversations from Last Night” by PfAL alumna Victory Osas.
Read the reflections on Ubuntu Café by S. Su’eddie-Vershima Agema.
About Ubuntu Café
The Ubuntu Café was established in 2022, as a space for African students at LSE and friends of Africa to connect, converge, debate and be empowered.
The vision for Ubuntu Café is to create an informal public space that is uniquely African - intellectually stimulating, creative, lively, vibrant, stimulating and very interactive.
The objectives are to educate, entertain and network through a series of activities including talks, debates, spoken word, poetry, music, art etc. It can also be a platform to trial our PfAL showcase where African students can share their unique ideas/dissertation findings about Africa and the world with a wider public.
Watch the footage of from the Ubuntu Café.
The full report of the first Ubuntu Café can be read here, or scroll down to see more.
- To foster a greater sense of engagement and community for the PfAL and African students at LSE.
- To raise the profile of PfAL within the School.
- To showcase and celebrate Africa at LSE.
- To foster engagement with the African diaspora.
- To nurture and celebrate the spirit of Ubuntu.
Ubuntu Cafe - 13th October 2022
On Thursday 13th October, we welcomed almost one hundred LSE students, staff, incoming PfAL’ers as well as previous cohorts, and friends of Africa from the LSE and beyond, to the GenDen at LSE Generate on campus, for very special evening – the first Ubuntu Café, in celebration of Black History Month in the UK. Keep scrolling for a rundown of what took place.
We kicked things off with some drinks and snacks as people settled into the venue.
Victory Osarumwense, an incoming PfAL’er and postgraduate student in the International Development, ensured the mood stayed light with some icebreakers, inviting attendees to participate and speak to one another.
Sechaba Nkitseng, MSc Media and Communications, then introduced the theme and concept of the Café and welcomed all to LSE in the spirit of Ubuntu.
There’s no better way to share experiences and stories than through words and it was remarkable to hear these thoughtful, passionate and enlivening performances.
The fiercely talented Rhodah Nyamongo performed James Brown’s This is a Man’s World to a mesmerised audience – be sure to check out the video to see this!
After the music, we had the first panel discussion, entitled Culture Shocks. Three incoming PfAL’ers, Chris Agape, Uche Ogechukwu and Nadine Whelpton spoke eloquently, honestly and always with humour, about the things they found most shocking upon arriving in London and at the LSE. The conversation ranged from navigating London’s (often incomprehensible) system of buses, to feelings of isolation and loneliness. And it’s exactly those feelings, that inspired the Ubuntu Café.
After more drinks and music from Southern Rebelz, it was time for the next panel discussion – Africans in the Diaspora: Brain Drain or Brain Gain.
Regular Africa at LSE blog contributor and FLIA Visiting Fellow, Dr Uche Igwe was joined by LSE Department of Health Policy Assistant Professor, Dr Lucy Kanya to discuss this pertinent topic. With insightful contributions and questions from the audience, these impressive academics navigated the Brain Drain or Brain Gain question with respect, intelligence and humour.
T.Remi closed proceedings with several songs, before food was served.
Thanks to all for attending, we’ll be in touch with the next Ubuntu Café – watch this space!
- "Ubuntu Café is a space for Africans at LSE (and wider) to come together and celebrate our cultures and ourselves. It's a joyful space and an enriching one."
- "This event was exactly what I needed at LSE. It was a place where I found belonging and so much more."
- "Meeting, listening and actively having conversations with new African students at the LSE, like myself and those that came before us was a reassurance that even though I might be miles away from home, I still have a family close by!"
- "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together."
- The Ubuntu Café felt like a "home away from home."