Since 1979, “Africa Fundacion Sur” (AFS), which is based in Madrid, has worked in the area of information, education, documentation, promotion of JPIC, dialogue and integral development. In fact, in all that concerns the African continent.
The basic objectives remain the same: a better understanding of African cultures, the reality, potential and challenges of the African peoples, seeking to promote more just relationships and integral development.
The target groups are young people and educators, social leaders, politicians, business people and the Spanish-speaking world.
The means at our disposal are the web, radio programmes, and courses, interviews on TV, publications and networking with other groups interested in Africa. Two professional co-workers and dozens of volunteers are our essential collaborators.
There is the need for an ongoing evaluation and a fine-tuning of our contacts and activities if we are to achieve our objectives in this ever-changing domain using the latest digital means at our disposal.
We wish to share with you some Impact Indicators, demonstrating the relevance of AFS:
1. The Website: www.africafundacion.org
The AFS website has become a reference point in the Spanish-speaking world to have better knowledge of African news and events and access to relevant studies and publications on Africa. Every day, the website receives 1,650 different hits from router identification numbers (IP). The hit from a community of five or a 2,000 strong student group count as one entry. Therefore, these daily 1.650 entries can mean thousands and up to millions of individuals being informed.
The news about the killing of Senegalese Human Rights activist, Masar Ba in Argentina, was first made known on our website, and it received more than 60,000 visits in one day, mainly from Argentina.
The news of the condemnation of Hissene Habre to life imprisonment appeared on our website on the 30th May 2016 one hour before it appeared in the mainstream Spanish media such as the prestigious El Païs.
2. Radio Programs:
AFS produces and presents three types of Radio Programs:
“Africania,” is a one-hour program, consisting of an editorial, African news, an interview with an African representative or a specialist in African affairs, a calendar of events, all flavoured with African music. This program is made available to the “Union of Regional Radios” of Spain and South America. We know that 35 regional and local radios regularly present our programs, which are downloaded 108 times a week (5,605 a year) by different individuals and/or other community radios. This means we have a large outreach.
“La otra cara de Africa” (The other face of Africa) is a five minute programme presenting another or less known face of Africa. The same 35 radios station broadcast our programme, which is downloaded 57 times a week (3.012 a year) by individuals or other community radios. This spreads information about Africa further.
“Africa Hoy” (Africa Today) is a program of the Spanish National Radio Group (RTVE). This program consists of an interview, every Friday, lasting 20-30 minutes. It analyses the most significant news and events, which have taken place during the week on the African Continent. This program has the capacity to reach several million Spanish-speaking people all over the world.
3. University Courses:
Every academic year, AFS presents programmes with different themes on Africa in the area of cultures, religions, JPIC, Islam in Africa and in Europe to five Universities. The most popular topics are Islam in Africa and Europe, new slaveries in Africa, Human Rights, Women as protagonists in Africa’s development, Armed Groups, etc.
Three confreres and staff members, together with some African professors, are involved in presenting this service. Each professor normally presents 12 courses of three hours each that have an average of 70 university students per seminar. This means that each teacher is in contact with 840 students per year, and that the four of us plus some professors educate 3.360 students per academic year.
An interesting fact is that two Madrid Universities have already integrated different courses on Africa with AFS involvement into their curriculum.
AFS has an excellent position in the main search engines (SEO) such as Google, where AFS is found in the first places regarding Africa related topics.
If you type in Spain: “Knowledge of Africa,” on Google, You will find AFS on the first page, third place,
On “Bitacora Africana,” AFS has the first page and the first place,
On “Africania,” you see AFS in the first page, and first place,
On “Biblioteca Africana,” we appear in the first page, first place,
On “Documentation Africana,” AFS has the first page, and first place,
On “Estudios Africanos,” you will find us in the first page, and eight place,
On “Cursos Universidad Africa,” AFS is the first page, third place,
On “Islam en Africa,” AFS appears in the first place, seventh place,
On “Afroislam,” we are in the first page, second place,
On “Agenda Africana,” AFS is found in the first page, fourth place,
On “Ensayos Casa Africa,” AFS has the first page, and first place,
On “Pagina web Africa,” first page, first place,
On “Portal web Africa,” first page, first place,
On “Portal Africa,” first page, fifth place.
5. Africa in the Schools and Libraries:
These are two programs of “Formal Education” and “Informal Education,” which we have presented for years. However, they cannot be offered at present for financial reasons. These programs have benefitted over 500 students as well as many teachers and librarians, who are looking to be committed citizens promoting an intercultural and responsible development. Within “Africa en la Escuela”, a very interesting and intercontinental program has been elaborated, in collaboration with three African Universities (Ugandan Martyrs University, University of Ibadan and Kwame Nkrumah University) and three European ones (University of Malaga, Complutense of Madrid and UNED).
6. AFS as a venue of Encounter:
Every week, we present new books or theses written about Africa by African or other writers.
African Associations meet regularly in our premises. They have invited guests or speakers or they just hold their own meetings.
The 25 African Ambassadors in Madrid always invite AFS to their celebrations and general meetings. They have shown their appreciation for the way we present Africa by presenting AFS with an important gift. When an African President comes for an official visit to Spain, the King and Government usually invite AFS to attend.
We receive four or five young Africans every day. They come to keep themselves informed about what is happening in their own countries. We also welcome two or three researchers on a daily basis. They come to consult the books in our 24,000-volume library.
We sincerely thank you for your concern and for all your support, which enables us to carry on these activities.
Lázaro Bustince, M.Afr.