Forfait Mama Program Delivers

Since its foundation in 2002, Harambee has supported over 67 projects in 20 countries in sub-Saharan Africa.  The ongoing projects for 2017 include a maternity service program with Monkole Hospital in Democratic Republic of Congo. The assistance includes a health service called “Forfait Mama” which covers C-section and normal deliveries, laboratory tests, ultrasounds, post-natal follow-ups and medicines for a subsidized cost of 50 Euros. The program also covers medical attention to the newborn babies. The following is a testimonial story of a patient.


Ms. Kalenga and her whole family attend the MOLUKA Health Center. It was thanks to the Relais Communautaires who went from house to house for public health awareness that she was informed about the launch of the “Forfait Mama” (Mama Package) project. Being pregnant, she immediately subscribed to the project, but found it difficult to pay the subsidized $55 required by the project. Two days before the expected delivery date, she had a pre-uterine rupture while she was at home. A medical ambulance was sent to take her to the CHME and take care of her immediately. She gave birth to twins on February 3, a son and a daughter: Chako and Omba (as twins are called in her tribe). Mother and babies stayed in the hospital for post-natal support for another few days. All were healthy and were greeted with the greatest joy when they returned home on February 7.

Ethiopian Cooking Class

Cooking Class-1 Cooking Class -2 Cooking Class-3 Cooking Class-4

The Harambee USA Foundation aims to educate and promote the African culture.  What could be more appetizing than learning about the cuisines from different parts of the African continent?  Recently, a team of Harambee USA Foundation supporters in New York City organized an Ethiopian Cooking Class. Everyone enjoyed the evening of preparing delicious meat and vegetable Ethiopian dishes including Azifa, Tibs, Timtimo, Shiro and Gomen. The two chef-instructors, Abby and Luwam, had comprehensive knowledge and experience of the Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisines along with a knack for making cooking fun and entertaining.

Each of the participants tasted the variety of meat and vegetable dishes, served on large shared platters, together with the injera, a spongy, slightly fermented flatbread made from Teff, a millet-like grain found in the high mountains of East Africa. The meal was paired with the very popular Ethiopian honey wine. The evening offered the group a warm atmosphere that allowed for great conversation and the formation of friendships.

During the session, attendees also learned more about the Harambee Foundation work.  Chinwe Esimai, Chairwoman of Harambee USA, talked about the numerous projects that had been supported, as well as the impact those projects had on individuals and communities in Africa.
It was a fun evening and everyone is looking forward to the next cooking session!

Seventh Harambee International Award “CONVEYING AFRICA”

Harambee Africa International is launching the 7th International Prize, “Communicating Africa” to help create a more accurate image of Africa, one that reflects the existing conflicts but also shows the reasons for hope; the richness and diversity of its peoples and cultures, the unwavering commitment to development, and at the same time the needs, which are still very real. In short, to promote awareness of a continent that is a treasure for the whole world.

This is a prize for anyone who can bring out the greatneRss of the little stories this continent and its people hold, including stories of integration, peaceful coexistence, and dialogue.
The goal is not to give a naive or simplistic view of Africa, but rather to show that, alongside wars and shortages, one also finds hope and the honest work of many individuals and organizations.

Harambee means “All Together” in Swahili and summarizes the meaning of this organization: all together to accompany a continent that has much to teach the world.

Download the Contest Rules
Registration Form

Harambee USA’s colloquium: “African Art & Symbolism” presented thought-provoking artwork that left the viewers in awe.

Art Presentation Art Presentation Art Presentation Art Presentation Art Presentation

“African Art & Symbolism” was the topic of Harambee USA’s colloquium given by Professor Diane Wilson on July 8, 2016 at the IESE Business School in New York. Wilson, a professor of African Civilization at the NYC College of Technology, explained the significance of Aguaba dolls as well as the distinct characteristics of African masks. Her talk was followed by an exhibit of photos from Mark Beach, entitled “The Three Loves” which portrayed the three loves emanating from God, others and self. Mark juxtaposed modern day images with Biblical verses, creating a thought-provoking artwork that left the viewers in awe. Mr. Beach kindly donated a portion of the proceeds of the sale of the photos to benefit the work of Harambee USA.

Harambee “Conveying Africa” Award Winners Announced

Overcoming stereotypes. Showing a dynamic and rarely publicized side of Africa. This was the goal of the Harambee video contest for professionals and students.

ROSSELLA MIRANDA, Harambee: “Africa is more than wars, Boko Haram, terrorism, poverty and illnesses. It’s a continent that’s growing and full of potential.” 

The sixth international “Conveying Africa” contest wanted to give a spotlight to the positive, yet often overlooked side of Africa. So, the judges were looking for every day stories that reflect the hope and rise of the continent. After thorough evaluation the decisions of the jury were as follows:

The winner of the “Documentary broadcast on television or websites” category is: JEANS & MARTO’, by Claudia Palazzi and Clio Sozzani, produced by Suttvuess. Jury comments: Effectively portrays the powerful commitment of a young African aiming to improve his lot through study. Underlines the importance of combining tradition and modernity in building a better future. The image of Africa differs from the usual ones, highlighting the value of its human heritage, a proactive heritage that takes command of its own time.

The joint winners of the “Video produced by under-25s” category are:

      • THE REAL HEROES, by Wojciech Sierocki and Marcin Kiszka. Jury comments: Original idea, avoids all stereotypes in its depiction of Africa. Employs subjective-plane cinematic techniques to represent the commitment and dedication of the local population in tackling major difficulties.
      • WAVES, by Federico Marangi. Jury comments: Creativity and commitment in dealing with one of today’s burning issues. It is evident that entering the Competition has been an opportunity for reflection, and has given rise to an attitude of new appreciation and respect towards Africa.

During the awards ceremony, Harambee Africa International awarded the 2015 NGOZI PRIZE to Paolo Ruffini, TV2000, for his “professional approach, precision and sensitivity in reporting on the tragic situation of migrants, helping to render the debate on their harsh situation more balanced and respectful.”

Ivory Coast Receives Harambee’s First Contribution

Thanks to the generosity of various donors, Harambee has been able to send a contribution of 25,000 Euros to a project to combat malnutrition in the rural area of Bingirville, Ivory Coast. This project is promoted by the Illomba Center, and the fundraising campaign continues!

Rome’s Schools Get to Know Harambee Projects

“A Day in Africa” is an interactive course aimed at cultivating a culture of hospitality, friendliness and active citizenship among students. To this end, Harambee has organized a series of sessions aimed at secondary school students in Rome.

Study Olympics for Solidarity From April 20 to May 24, 2015 in Italy

Thanks to an initiative promoted by the University Residence Viscontea in Milan, for five weeks studying will be synonymous with solidarity and support for a project to combat malnutrition in the Bingerville area in Ivory Coast. Every day, the girls there can contribute their own study (1 hour = 1 euro) to participate in the project.

Harambee Blog: The Flood of Low-Priced Smartphones in Africa

Until recently, having a quality smartphone in Africa was only for the rich or lucky. Now things have changed. Read Blog

Vanessa Koutouan Awarded 2015 Harambee “African Woman” Award

Madrid, Spain, March 3, 2015– The winner of the annual Harambee Award “for the promotion and equality of African women” was presented to Vanessa Koutouan. Koutouan is the director of the Ilomba Rural Center located in the outskirts of Bingerville, Ivory Coast, that offers vocational training for women, literacy, healthcare and hygiene assistance for mothers and children.

EMD Students Move Forward on Harambee Project

Marseille, France, February 13, 2015– A fundraising campaign promoted at the Marseille School of Business Administration (EMD) saw a successful opening, with more than 80 people participating in a reception organized by students. The initiative was promoted by the Harambee France committee.

VI International Harambee Prize “Communicating Africa”

Rome, Italy, February 19, 2015– The VI International Harambee Prize “Communicating Africa” was inaugurated to award audio-visual works that reflect the real experiences of integration, coexistence and dialogue in Africa and about Africa. The Prize has two categories: one for reports and documentaries broadcast on television or Internet-based news channels and the other for video clips made by students 25 years old or younger. Read more …

Beatification of Bishop Don Álvaro del Portillo

Madrid, Spain, September 27, 2014– The beatification of Bishop Álvaro del Portillo will take place in Madrid, Spain. He was the successor to Saint Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei. Among many other initiatives, Bishop Álvaro del Portillo began social and educational projects in Africa. Read more …

Enugu Book Project founder dies

New York, NY, November 14, 2013– Ngozi Agbim was a dear friend and colleague whose life was suddenly and tragically cut short by a traffic accident one terrible day last June. Ngozi was a librarian by profession and for many years was the head of the library at LaGuardia Community College in New York. The library is at the heart of any educational institution, and under Ngozi’s leadership, the library at LaGuardia became known throughout the vast City University system for its outstanding service.

While maintaining a distinguished career and busy family life as wife and mother of three, Ngozi always made time to befriend a wide variety of women from all walks of life. In addition, she and her husband Silas would periodically leave their home in Brooklyn to pay their families a visit in their beloved Nigeria. One of those visits gave rise to a project that stretched over several years—what we came to call “The Enugu Book Project.” Read More …


New York, NY, March 30, 2011 – The full report of the activities carried out last year by Harambee Africa International is now available. The document details all fundraising and educational initiatives conducted by the Harambee network, which Harambee USA is part of. A complete report on the Sub-Saharan projects funded in 2010 is also included. Download the Harambee 2010 Report now.



New York, NY, December 12, 2010 – Harambee USA’s first trip to Africa this past September was more than an African safari.  It was a learning expedition of another sort and it was worthwhile on so many grounds!
We finally met the Cameroonians first-hand.  Some were those who have benefited from our funding in the past and others, those who are hoping for a share in future Harambee generosity.

Harambee USA President presents student with scholarship

On this 10-day trip we learned more about whole-hearted African generosity in its own right.   Our local coordinators planned and executed an action-packed, highly educational visit.  We spoke with local program promoters without whom Harambee initiatives would be impossible.  We witnessed their dedication and shared vision for a better Africa.  We were able to applaud them for their efforts and share in their joys.

It was gratifying to see the real effects of Harambee funding, relatively small, but producing marked and measurable results: like the increased self-esteem and economic independence of women and their families; the opportunities for women to go beyond their daily struggles for subsistence and recognize their inherent dignity; and above all, the joy of sharing their dreams and plans for the future.

Our visits to schools and other project sites increased our understanding of the routine impediments to learning which even small funding from the United States can alleviate.  Imagine for a moment a primary school in Baham in Western Cameroon.  Although students are proud owners of big school bags, 99% of those were empty! Books are practically a luxury item.  Only one school of the 10 we saw had a library and that library held approximately 50 books.  The dedicated teachers are practically the sole source of knowledge for hundreds of young people.  Yet, barely $270.00 pays for10 rural children to attend school for one year there.  That is right.  You and I can help educate a Cameroonian child for $27.00 a year.

Kids welcoming Harambee delegates to school

We found the people hard working, enthusiastic, and full of interest and history. They are superbly hospitable. We were welcomed in every project site by the director or another high-caliber official presenting us with a formal welcome address; refreshments were always on hand too.  They stuffed their farm products, such as peanuts and sugar cane, into the trunks of our jeeps before we could leave.  Children especially were genuinely joyful.  Their gleeful song filled the soul.  We received paintings signed by a local artist showing how Cameroon culture mirrors the Harambee spirit.  We are indebted to them and ever so grateful for their generous hearts.

Africa needs Harambee and Harambee needs you!  Yes, our efforts may amount to a mere drop in the bucket considering the enormous challenges many Africans face daily. However, both Africans and Americans are very resourceful, determined peoples.
Let me close by saying that this trip helped us to discover the African woman in particular as our biggest advocate and our best asset.  She remains a tower of strength and bears much of the burden of development. She needs only a helping hand from you and me to do great things for her family and society.  Truly she is a major player in creating sustainable economic independence for Africa.

We look forward to a continuing partnership with you so that “All together for one” we can keep helping Africans to help themselves.

Happy Holidays to all!
Ngozi Agbim