One Big Happy Alumni Family: Australian Alumni in Africa Converge in Harare
On Thursday 27 July 2017, Australian Ambassador Suzanne McCourt hosted a reception for Australian Alumni from eight African countries who were attending an Alumni Leader Workshop in Harare on 27 and 28 July.
Ambassador McCourt welcomed alumni from Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe, diplomatic representatives and DFAT staff from the Australian High Commission in Kenya and the Australian Embassy in Ethiopia. She also acknowledged representatives from the Australia Awards Managing Contractor, the Palladium Group, and the workshop facilitator, Dr Gretchen Dobson.
Ambassador McCourt commented on the importance of the workshop, which was expected to provide practical guidance on setting up, running and growing alumni associations. Whilst acknowledging the challenges of funding, she emphasised the importance of ensuring sustainability as the associations provided important links between Australia and their countries through professional and academic partnerships.
Australia has made grant funding available to alumni associations to enable them to expand their networks and nurture a lasting connection with Australia. Noting how collaborating with alumni associations helps promote connections that enhance Australia’s diplomatic and economic interests, Ambassador McCourt in her remarks said, “I have enjoyed going to alumni events and making connections with people from the private sector, research and academic institutions and government.”
Felida Nkhoma, the newly elected Alumni Ambassador for Zimbabwe, also took to the podium, welcoming guests to Zimbabwe. Felida expressed the honour of having been selected Alumni Ambassador of Zimbabwe. She highlighted the wealth of information and experience amongst the alumni across the various African countries, and encouraged all present to remain engaged within and across associations and continue to share and learn together as ‘One Big Happy Family!’
To get in touch with Australian Alumni Associations from Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi, contact Rufaro Shumba on Rufaro.Shumba@dfat.gov.au
Australian Alumni and DFAT staff unwinding at the Embassy Club House after the Alumni Leader Workshop