The African Beat

December 23, 2016


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Suite 400 North
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MOAA Joins Carlos Rosario for Black History Month Celebration, February 26, 2016.
DC Police Department's African Liaison Team conducts public safety outreach in Ward 4, August 23, 2016.
African Studies students from Howard University following a discussion on African immigrants in the District, African Heritage Month, September 9, 2016.
Fiesta DC 2
MOAA and community member attends FiestaDC, September 17, 2016.
MOAA attends community meeting hosted by DC Interim Chief of Police Newsham, December 1, 2016.
MOAA attended Mayor Bowser's Senior Holiday Party, December 8th, 2016.
Eduardo Paim, Angolan music legend who popolarized kizomba music, April 14, 2016.
Guy Djoken, Executive Director of the UNESCO Center for Peace, May 4, 2016.
Carlos Dos Santos, Ambassador of the Republic of Mozambique to the United States, May 27, 2016
H.E. Babacar Diagne, Ambassador of the Senegal to the United States, September 7, 2016.
MOAA hosts hip-hop artist Guman Xuman and colleagues for a Dakar-DC Sister Cities discussion, September 16, 2016.
Ndaba Mandela, grandson of former South African president and iconic leader Nelson Mandela, September 14, 2016.
H.E. Omar Arouna, Ambassador of the Republic of Benin to the United States, October 25, 2016.
Labor Union and Airport Union workers, December, 20, 2016

MOAA's 2016 Year in Review 

As the year comes to a close, we look back at our accomplishments and ongoing commitment to serve our diverse African communities through Mayor Bowser's priorities for the District and related programs and services. We thank all our DC Government partner agencies, our volunteers, our staff and interns, our grantees, and our sponsors and supporters for a successful 2016 and look forward to another year of continued service!


MOAA Staff and Interns 2016

MOAA Celebrates Black History Month 


On February 17, 2016, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) commemorated Black History Month under the theme, “Conversations, Community & ConneXions.” 

The evening began with a screening of Diaspora in Dialogue: A Profile of Africans in the District of Columbia, a film produced by the Mayor's Office on African Affairs, in partnership with the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music & Entertainment, and the DC Commission on Arts and Humanitiess. Designed to shine a spotlight on the growing diversity of African immigrants, this film presents first-person accounts of six individuals who represent the rich linguistic, cultural, and professional array of Africans who call the District home. 

A post-screening panel discussion followed in which participants and audience members reflected on the historical and contemporary ties between African and African-American communities. Panelists included Rahman Branch, Director of DC Mayor’s Office on African-American Affairs; Heran Sereke-Brhan, Ph.D., Deputy Director of DC Mayor’s Office on African Affairs; Greg Carr, Ph.D., J.D., Chair of Afro-American Studies and Adjunct Faculty at School of Law, Howard University; and Emira Woods, Director of Global Impacts, ThoughtWorks. Loide Rose Jorge, Esq., Vice-Chair of the Commission on African Affairs, moderated the discussion and about 150 audience members attended the event.

Click here to view more pictures

EKO | African Diaspora Coding Academy Web Development

Graduating Class of EKO | African Diaspora Coding Academy

In 2016, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) held two web development program sessions through its' EKO | African Diaspora Coding Academy. EKO reinforces Mayor Bowser’s commitment to focus on high-growth industries such as technology to stimulate job creation and prepare District constituents with long-term competitive skills that will place under-served community members on pathways to the middle class. EKO is a singularly unique program for the African community with goals to extend free, basic coding training to over 120 residents in web and mobile applications, including women and girls.The program was launched in 2015 in partnership with the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO), the Department of Human Resources (DCHR)’s Center for Learning and Development, and Coders4Africa (C4A). 

Click here to see more pictures of the EKO graduation

Learn more about EKO: Video.  

MOAA Presents Mayor's Africa Day Proclamation

Director Samba, Deputy Director Sereke-Brhan, and Commissioner Barnes present Mayor' Muriel Bowser's Africa Day Proclamation to H. E. Ambassador Serge Mombouli of the Republic of Congo and leader of the African Ambassador's Group.

On Monday, May 23, 2016, the African Ambassador Group hosted the 2016 African Day Celebrations in Washington, DC. The event, themed "African Year of Human Rights with Emphasis on the Rights of Women," brought together over 900 guests, representing 54 African member states at a gala evening of food and entertainment, co-chaired by H.E. Omar Arouna, Ambassador of the Republic of Benin and H.E. Professor Hassana Alidou, Ambassador of the Republic of Niger.

Rousing remarks were delivered by special guests, including the Rev Jesse Jackson, Sr., Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole, Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and Mamadou Samba, DC Mayor Office of African Affairs. Attendees had the opportunity to sample the gastronomic flavors from across Africa, prepared by award-winning Cameroonian chef Jean Chrysostome Olama Mballa, the Executive Chef for the IMF. 

Learn more

Click to view Facebook album 

MOAA and COAA Host Know Your Rights Town Hall Discussion

Commissioner Wilair St. Vil and Director Samba address participants.

On Monday, June 27, 2016, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) and Commission on African Affairs (COAA), hosted a Town Hall titled “Know Your Rights” at the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) Board Hearing Room in the Franklin D. Reeves Center of Municipal Affairs. This event was held as part of MOAA’s Community Outreach program.

The town hall was organized in partnership with the Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs, and the Mayor’s Office on Asian Pacific Islander Affairs and was attended by 65 community members. Speakers and panelists engaged audience members in dialogue on topics such as consumer protection, housing, public safety, language access, and the importance of creating trust between constituents and government agencies. Among the speakers and panelists were representatives from Metropolitan Police Department, Mónica Palacio, director at the Office of Human rights, Delores Anderson, Education and Outreach Coordinator at the Office of Tenants Advocate, Sylvia Garrick, Consumer Education and Outreach Specialist at the Office of the People’s Counsel and Phillip Ziperman, Director at the Office of the Attorney General (Office of Consumer Protection).

By providing information and resources to immigrant communities, this program reflected Mayor Bowser’s commitment to improve the lives of all District residents and set more communities on ‘Pathways to the Middle Class’ as they continue to contribute to the diversity and economic vibrancy of the city.

Learn more

The Mayor's Office on African Affairs Hosts Its Second Annual Young African ConneXions

Participants of MOAA's Young African ConneXions Summit.

On Friday, July 15, 2016, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) hosted its second annual Young African ConneXions (YAX) Summit titled Impact through Leadership, Civic Engagement, and Social Entrepreneurship.  The summit was held at the Howard University School of Business Auditorium as part of MOAA’s 10th Year Anniversary Celebrations and its ongoing Youth Engagement program that is conducted in support of Mayor Bowser's policy priorities. Over 155 members of the public attended the summit which created a platform that brought together bright minds for idea focused peer-to-peer exchanges. The summit also fostered interactions between the District’s African immigrant community and young professionals from the continent on topics such as leadership, technology, education, and the importance of civic engagement.

Learn more 

Click here to view YAX Summit 2016 photo album

Click here to watch Second Annual Young African ConneXions Summit video

The Mayor's Office on African Affairs Hosted It's Second Annual Mandela Day of Service

MOAA staff and volunteer participants of Mandela Day of Service 2016.

As part of its Youth Engagement program, and inspired by former South African President Nelson Mandela’s life and years of public service, the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs (MOAA) hosted its Mandela Day of Service 2016 on Saturday, July 16, 2016. About 130 community members participated in the Anacostia River clean-up and removed 1,800 lbs. of trash from the river's banks and surrounding areas. In its second year, this city-wide program has doubled in size to include several District government agencies and private sector partners as well as a greater number of program participants all dedicated to community-building through voluntarism.

Learn more 

Click here to view MOAA's and DPW's Mandela Day photo album

Click here to watch MOAA's second annual Mandela Day of Service video

Mayor Bowser Swears In New Members of the Commission on African Affairs 

From l-r: Chair Dr. Akua Asare, Commissioners Abdel Maliky and Lydia Nylander, Mayor Bowser, Secretary Kidist Geremew, Director Samba, and Commissioner Dr. Pape Cisse
Commissioner Ikenna Udejiofor, Mayor Bowser, Director Samba, and Commissioner Chibu E. Anyanwu.

The Commission on African Affairs (COAA) welcomed new and renewing members to its team in 2016, among them: Dr. Akua Asare, Abdel Maliky, Lydia Nylander, Kedist Geremaw, Ikenna Udejiofor, Chibu  Anyanwu and Dr. Pape Cisse. The Commission advises the Mayor, DC Council, and Mayor's Office on African Affairs on relevant issues impacting the African immigrant community in the District.  

Commission meetings are open to the public and are held at 6:00pm on the first Wednesday of each month at the Reeves Center located at 2000 14 Street, NW, Washington, DC, 20009. 

Learn more

African Heritage Month Diaspora in Dialogue

Director Samba joins staff from George Mason University's Center for Immigrant Research and members of the Congressional African Staff Association.

In commemoration of African Heritage Month in September, the Congressional African Staff Association and the Mayor’s Office of African Affairs convened for a panel discussion themed Diaspora in Dialogue: Demographics, Policy, and ConneXions. The discussion unveiled the joint demographic research conducted by The Mayor’s Office on African Affairs and George Mason University Center for Immigrant Research to capture and analyze data from the District's African community. The findings of this research will support robust policy discussions and provide much needed source material for various stakeholders.

Click here to view African Heritage Month: Diaspora in Dialogue photo album

Mayor Muriel Bowser offers welcome remarks.

The Mayor’s Office on African Affairs Hosts Its
10th Year Anniversary Celebration

On September 27, 2016 the Mayor’s Office on African Affairs celebrated its 10th Year Anniversary themed A Decade of Service to the District’s African Community.  

The event commemorated September as African Heritage Month, and featured traditional and contemporary African performances, music, and comedy. Mayor Muriel Bowser delivered welcoming remarks and presented awards to community leaders that have contributed significantly to the integration efforts and vitality of the African community in the District.

Director Mamadou Samba shares agency accomplishments.
Mayor Bowser and MOAA staff with the Mayor's Community Leadership Awardees (l-r): MOAA Deputy Director Heran Sereke-Brhan, Director Mamadou Samba, Awardees Henok Tesfaye, Margaret Kamara and Aisha Saaka, Mayor Muriel Bowser, Awardees Dr. Menna Demissie, Mwiza Munthali, and Gathoni Kamau.

Click this link to watch the full video of MOAA's 10th Anniversary Celebration.


MOAA's 10th Anniversary Celebrations also featured a short documentary film on the Mayor's African Community Grant 2016 Awardees and their work in the community. Awardees featured are: African Women's Cancer Awareness Association; Bread for teh City; Ethiopian Community Center; Hepatitis B Initiative of Washington DC; KanKouran West African Dance Group; Many Languages One Voice; Multicultural Community Service; The Person Center; and the Renaissance Center for Culture and Education.

Click below to watch video

Director Samba Named Advocate of the Year at the 2016 Applause Africa Awards


On Saturday, December 3rd, 2016, Mamadou Samba, Director of the Mayor's Office of African Affairs (MOAA), received the Advocate of the Year award at the 2016 Applause Africa event. In the past ten years, Applause Africa has honored Africans in the Diaspora who have made a positive difference in improving the lives of African communities locally and internationally. Director Samba was recognized as a notable African leader who advocates for over 18,000 African residents in Washington DC. In accepting the award, Director Samba thanked Mayor Bowser, and the entire Mayor's Office on African Affairs team. He dedicated the award to the memory of the late Malick Diagne, a community advocate who lived in the DMV area and served as an inspiration.  

Learn more

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The Mayor's Office on African Affairs Wishes You Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year 2017!