2023 graduate Charity Afful gears up for service in fulfilment of her calling to reinvest in Africa

Aluma Charity Afful from Ghana has overcome the odds to persevere and go on to be appointed a Global Mission Fellow set to serve in Liberia for two years. A two time graduate, service above self and philanthropy runs through her veins. Her father, also a Global Mission Fellow who served in the DRC until his untimely passing shortly before her graduation in May 2023 was her inspiration.

She said, “I firmly believe in the power of servant leadership and its profound impact on both individuals and communities. As a servant leader, my primary objective is to serve and uplift others, placing their needs above my own.  By actively listening to the concerns and aspirations of those I lead, I am better equipped to understand their unique challenges and provide meaningful support. I recognize that true leadership lies in my ability to inspire and motivate others to reach their full potential, and this is achieved through acts of service and selflessness.”

Africa University was a place of individual growth for Charity, having spent a large portion of her childhood in the DRC, she was looking forward to expanding her horizons further in a Pan- African environment that nurtured leadership , encouraged advancement and individual development.

“AU places a strong emphasis on community engagement and social responsibility. During my time there, I had numerous opportunities to actively participate in community service, internships, and research projects that focused on sustainable development, human rights advocacy, and environmental justice. These experiences allowed me to develop empathy, leadership skills, and a deep understanding of the challenges faced by marginalized communities, preparing me well for this next step in my career.”

She believes that the the 5 years she spent at the university prepared her perfectly for the Global Mission Fellowship programme where a holistic approach to education is practiced with focus not only in the classroom,  but on the wider community and world believing that education does not take place in a vacuum, but must be offered in such a manner that silos and the compartmentalization of theory and practice does not exist. In essence , learning and education for the upliftment of communities and not education for education’s sake.

“Critical thinking was part of our lives as students at AU. I learned to analyze complex issues, consider different viewpoints, and propose innovative solutions.  I will be serving as an educator of the hearing impaired where I shall contribute to the Ministry of the Hope of the Deaf Program. As an inclusive campus, I had the opportunity  to practice my sign language skills with a deaf  student at Africa University, to learn of his struggles and empower myself to become a better communicator. “

Charity is just one of over 900 graduates going out into the continent and globe this year and she joins a host of inspiring alumni who are transforming, changing , creating and  innovating.

She concluded saying, “It is with gratitude that I say that Africa University has been instrumental in my personal, spiritual and intellectual growth. It has provided me with a solid academic foundation, nurtured my leadership skills, and cultivated in me a deep sense of social consciousness. The experiences and values gained from my time at AU continue to guide and inspire me as I embark on my future endeavors, ready to make a positive impact in the world.”

Global Mission Fellows are young adults, ages 20–30, who are committed to serve in social justice ministries for two years. They enter into new communities, understanding their challenges and burdens through building relationships  with the long-term goal being to  overcome systemic oppression. Fellows partner with community organizations to address a variety of issues, including migration/immigration, education, public health and poverty (source : www.umcmission.org).