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Acumen East Africa Fellows Program for Emerging Leaders 2023

Every year, our Fellows Program in East Africa brings together 20 extraordinary individuals from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Burundi, and South Sudan, and equips them with the knowledge, support system and practical wisdom to drive positive change in society. Over the course of a year, Fellows remain in their jobs while taking part in five week-long seminars, where they receive the tools, training and space to innovate new ideas, accelerate their impact, build a strong network of social leaders from across their region and around the world.

About Acumen

Acumen was incorporated on April 1, 2001, with seed capital from the Rockefeller Foundation, Cisco Systems Foundation and three individual philanthropists. Our desire was to transform the world of philanthropy by looking at all human beings as members of a single, global community where everyone had the opportunity to build a life of dignity. The organization would invest “Patient Capital,” capital that bridges the gap between the efficiency and scale of market-based approaches and the social impact of pure philanthropy, in entrepreneurs bringing sustainable solutions to big problems of po... read more


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East Africa Fellows Program

Application Deadline28 Nov 2022
Country to studyBurundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda
TypeFellowship
SponsorAcumen
GenderMen and Women

Aim and Benefits of East Africa Fellows Program

Year 1

  • Join a diverse cohort of 20 leaders from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan, and Ethiopia
  • Acumen Fellows are drawn from diverse sectors, disciplines, organisations and social change journeys 
  • All programme costs covered by Acumen Academy East Africa 
  • Multiple virtual multi-day seminars and workshops, paired with individual and group online assignments between seminars 
  • Learning that is immediately applied to your life and work 
  • Peer coaching that challenges and accompanies you in your social change work 
  • Cultivate a deeper understanding of yourself and your work in a broader context 
  • Navigate uncertainty and embrace the meaningful process of creating change

Beyond Year 1

  • Join Acumen’s growing community of social innovators and builders accompanying each other from across the globe committed to a world beyond poverty and injustice
  • Opportunities to network, collaborate, as well as learn from and share experiences with other Acumen social innovators both locally and globally
  • After the first year of the Acumen Fellowship, fellows take part in a range of opportunities that are designed to both further their impact and build their communities

Requirements for East Africa Fellows Program Qualification

Our Fellows are individuals who dare to do what’s right, not what’s easy, to create positive change in their region. Fellows can come from diverse cultural, geographic and socioeconomic backgrounds and work in any sector, and they must be committed to ending poverty and injustice in their community through their work. They are individuals who are making a long-term play at system-level impact and are seeking the leadership skills and moral imagination to make it happen.

The Fellows we seek are:

  • Typically in one of the following trajectories: entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, and organizational builders whether for-profit, nonprofit, or in government. We define that as…
    • entrepreneurs: founding or leading a for-profit or nonprofit organization that provides critical goods or services to the underserved
    • organizational builders: supporting the growth of an organization, institution, or company focused on alleviating poverty or injustice but not as the founder of CEO
    • intrapreneurs: creating innovative solutions to tackle poverty or injustice from within an existing institution by shifting its culture and building new collaborations
  • Individuals who have a demonstrated history of impact, commitment and concrete connection to the region.
  • Leaders with strong personal integrity, unrelenting perseverance and moral imagination.
  • Committed individuals ready to undergo an intensive year-long personal transformation and leadership journey followed by an induction into the larger Fellows Community.
  • Individuals of all ages and education levels who are able to participate in a program conducted in English, or in Spanish for those in the Program in Colombia.


Application Deadline

November 28, 2022


How to Apply

Our application process consists of these five stages.

  1. 1Stage 1: An online application form designed to understand why this is the right time for you to become an Acumen Fellow.
  2. 2Stage 2: An opportunity to dig deeper into the work you do through an application form & short essay questions.
  3. 3Stage 3: Final selection for the finalists. The Selection Conference day includes elevator pitches, group activities, and a panel interview.
  4. 4Stage 4: The 2022 cohort will be selected in November and 2022 Fellows announced in December 2021.
  • It is important to go through all application requirements in the Award Webpage (see Link below) before applying.

For more details, visit Acumen website.

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