This is a discussion of philanthropy in Africa in its many manifestations and how it seeks to address the promotion of wellbeing. Philanthropy and development are not new phenomena in Africa. Neither are they divorced from the questions of human wellbeing. For its part, philanthropy is intrinsically embedded in the life cycle of birth, life and death of many, if not all Africans. At any one given time, one is either a philanthropist or a recipient of one kind or another of benevolence. Though not a common or even user-friendly concept in Africa, philanthropy is a phenomenon perhaps best captured by the notions of 'solidarity and reciprocity' among Africans and some of the features that accompany relational building. As a result, therefore, culture and relation-building are central attributes in defining what philanthropy in the African context looks like.
Institute of Development Studies (IDS)
Copyright 2011 Institute of Development Studies, Resource Alliance, Rockefeller Foundation.
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