About

Dear Africa,
We hope this letter finds you in good spirits. So many times we’ve meant to write, but the life and times of this distant land keeps us scratching for survival. We see you in the news from time to time, and we are moved. We feel the wave of sadness drifting from your shoulders with every sigh. We write this letter to tell you that, though we may no longer be near, we have not forgotten you.

We are the world’s nurses, teachers, lawyers, engineers, cooks, and day laborers, but most of all, we are your children. We work day and we work night, we send you but the meager remains of our earnings. We send our sweat’s harvest to educate your children, feed the hungry, and to cure your many maladies. We have ventured near and far, conquered and been conquered, but always with a dream for a better life; for ourselves and those we have left at home. We know the burden on you is strong, and the resources scant.

We’ve watched as the outsiders have come with promises and left nothing but thirst and dependency. They’ve pillaged you for centuries, tricked you into believing that they mean no harm, but instead created a thirst for more empty promises. We watch and we wait for true change to come, for the day when we will stand shoulder to shoulder with the West and the East. The day when we will be measured as true equals, the x-factor in any, and all global commerce conversations. We’ve begged for a seat at the round table. We’ve fought to be picked as a major player, and not as a scrub hoping to be chosen as the last possible option.

For decades we’ve stood by, watched, and even shed silent tears of helplessness. Everywhere that our footsteps have ventured, we’ve served as your ambassadors; testaments to the willingness of your children to roam far and wide, just for a chance at a better life. Yet everywhere we go, almost all 165 million of us, reach the same conclusion—home is where the heart is. At the end of the day, when our feet are tired and our backs are sore, we think of your warmth, your love, and your suffering. We smile at the memories of the good times we had with you; the laughter of our youthful innocence, the abundance of your gardens, flowing rivers and waterfalls, glistening lakes, and thirsty, arid deserts. These are our most cherished memories.

And so to you we send this solemn pledge. No longer are we satisfied with the status quo. No longer will we look to the West and the East for a saviour to come. We here claim our political struggles as our own; our short comings as our own; our unrest as our own; our dissidence as our own; our broken infrastructure as our own; our diseases as our own; our uneducated as our own; our corruption as our own; our unfed children as our own.