When we were forming The African Leadership Bridge, we asked ourselves a difficult question: ‘Why fund a single student for thousands of dollars a semester, when there are so many other great causes that need funding?’ There are not always clear answers to these types of questions, but we felt strongly of the following:
- our students will be leaders, entrepreneurs and force-multipliers – so we will not be impacting a single life, we will impact many, and
- our students will Pay-It-Forward – so that every dollar donated will be used again and again to assist many students over time.
PAY IT FORWARD- A LIFELONG ENGAGEMENT
The African Leadership Bridge champions innovation in funding higher education for Africa’s best and brightest. We are committed to amplifying the impact of our scholarships through our Pay-It-Forward program. The program encourages ALB graduates to commit to supporting the success of future ALB scholars by committing to support the organization financially and with their talents post-graduation. This model makes our scholars partners in achieving ALB's mission by:
1. Ensuring that our students are incentivized to seek out additional scholarships and grants, thereby guaranteeing the most efficient distribution of funds for The ALB and increasing our ability to fund more students.
2. Creating a dignified relationship with our scholars and giving them the opportunity to be active participants in providing a future ALB scholar with the same set of opportunities that were availed to them. By doing this we build a strong sense of community among our students.
The Pay-It-Forward model was inspired by our first scholar and is the most distinctive feature of our scholarship program.
We cherish this approach as it makes us a sustainable organization, in that every dollar that is allocated to the students' scholarships is multiplied and cycled through the foundation in perpetuity.