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Donors Need To Look Beyond Emergency Funding To Long-Term, Strategic Solutions

“Americans are among the most generous people in the world, giving more money to charities than citizens of any other nation in the world,” but “[m]uch of our charity goes to disaster relief,” entrepreneur and philanthropist Sheila Johnson writes in an opinion piece in the Huffington Post’s “Black Voices.” She adds, “I believe we can do more. We need to think long-term and become true partners in reshaping history. We need to boldly invest in innovative responses to Africa’s problems that are relevant locally, and that put Africans in the driver’s seat of determining the future of their continent.”

Johnson says the Infectious Disease Institute (IDI), a public-private partnership among the foundation Accordia, Pfizer, Inc., and Uganda’s Makerere University, “is an excellent example of this new philosophy,” which “requires corporations and philanthropists to stretch beyond easy, one-time emergency donations and short-term projects.” She concludes that “if we’re going to help prevent these emergencies from happening in the first place, and support Africa in driving its own development, we need to think long-term, be innovative, and make strategic commitments” (10/17).