In an ideal world there would be no need to advocate for people, because in an ideal world everyone would get treated with respect and get equal access to opportunities. But our world isn't ideal. Injustice abounds. The people who arguably face injustice the most wherever they are in the world are Africans and people of African descent. I advocate for Africa and its people not because I am African but because I believe everyone deserves to be treated fairly and given chances.
In May 2020, at the height of the COVID 19 pandemic and three days after I graduated from my doctoral program at Columbia University, I set up a Twitter account, @theafricaiknow_, with the goal to highlight African capability and provide a counter narrative to the negative stereotypes around Africa, including as it relates to our history. I believe those negative portrayals of the continent and its people can negatively affect our consciousness as Africans and make us believe we aren't capable of achieving.
The Twitter account turned into a growing 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization called The Africa I Know (or TAIK), currently with two paid employees and passionate volunteers living in different parts of the world, including in Africa. TAIK publishes content highlighting Africans who've had successful careers in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, artificial intelligence, and related fields. TAIK also publishes content related to African history and develops educational programs targeted towards young Africans. More than 1450 kids from impoverished areas in Senegal and Togo have benefitted from our work. And we plan to do more by leveraging media and education as tools for narrative change.