Music In Africa Foundation Annual Report for 2019 - 2020

Music In Africa Foundation Chairperson Ms. Maimouna Dembélé

The year under review has been an extremely challenging one mainly because of the COVID-19 pandemic declared in March 2020. Many businesses have closed down and music practitioners continue to face all kinds of restrictions across the continent. The impact of this on the ordinary musician in Africa cannot be underestimated.

We have always known that we are operating in a rapidly changing environment, but no one could have imagined the consequences of COVID-19. Our industry is faced with many uncertainties. This places a responsibility on civil society, the MIAF included,
to be agile and innovative in order to counter the scourge of the pandemic. I am happy to report that the MIAF has had a good year, despite the many unexpected challenges.

While we have had to postpone our flagship trade event, ACCES 2020, we have been able to develop two new programmes that address our beneficiaries’ new realities. These programmes are Music In Africa Live, a continent-wide funding programme, and the Revenue Streams for African Musicians (RSFAM) project – a ground-breaking initiative that will see the MIAF expanding its focus into big-data research, industry analytics, revenue model training and advocacy.

Fundraising is a crucial activity for the MIAF, as prescribed by our hybrid business
plan. The MIAF continues to maintain a high success rate in this area, especially in the year under review. But, more importantly, fundraising is a complementary function. The MIAF places key emphasis on developing programmes that are realistic, pragmatic and efficient in addressing sectorial challenges. We have set high-quality standards across every facet of the organisation, and I am proud to see the massive dedication to this ethos across the MIAF. In the year under review, the Directorate designed a new programme, the Sound Connects Fund, in collaboration with Goethe- Institut. This is a historic fund to the value of €3.8m, set to begin in January 2021.

Appreciation

It is with a great sense of appreciation that I acknowledge and thank my colleagues on the Board and advisory committees for their wise counsel. On behalf of my colleagues on the Board, I would like to thank our Director Mr. Eddie Hatitye for his strategic leadership and our staff for their outstanding care and hard work. These efforts have not gone unnoticed. I want to acknowledge our partners Siemens Stiftung and Goethe- Institut, whose continued support has taken us this far.

Once again, I am honoured to have been entrusted with the duties and responsibilities of being the chairperson of the MIAF for the past two years. I thank you all for being part of this beautiful journey, and I remain confident that the MIAF will continue to grow with the interests of all its members at heart.