The debate about how best to support development efforts in Africa is a rich one with a range of perspectives and opinions but at its center is the concept of partnership. The wonderful thing about philanthropy is that there are ample opportunities for working at various levels of scale.

First Peoples World Wide just announced a partnership with Citizen Effect to help them identify projects for their “citizen philanthropists.” One of the great things about this partnership is the learning that can take place about the issues facing indigenous communities. First People World Wide believes that having control over their assets is the most important way to strengthen indigenous communities.

Communication technology and the Internet gives us access to information about how our fellow citizens are living on this planet. Mutual respect and understanding is an important part of philanthropy that is often ignored in pursuit of solutions.  I like this idea of citizen philanthropists and partnerships that can leverage knowledge and resources.

A good source of information on issues affecting indigenous communities is the International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs.   They have resources on various regions including Africa. including Albert Kwokwo Barume’s book, Land Rights of Indigenous People in Africa.”