Meet the leader – Michael Richardson

Michael Richardson, director and co-founder of Destination Africa

Michael Richardson is the Director and co-Founder of Destination Africa, a social enterprise which organises and promotes African cultural workshops for children and families in London.

 

 

Read on to find out why Michael is a leader…

Country of birth:

United Kingdom

African countries you have visited:

Ghana / Gambia / Tanzania

Languages spoken:

Akan Twi / English

African dialects spoken or understood:

Fante

Your family background:

Black African, born and raised to Ghanaian parents. Lived in Ghana for my informative years before returning back to the U.K.

Tell us something about your leadership roles (employed or voluntary):

I have actively been involved in the sport of basketball for many years and have participated in the sport across the spectrum. I have actively played, coached and provided advisory support and mentorships to peer coaches and young people inspiring to play the sport at a high level.

I am the Director and co-Founder of Destination Africa, a social enterprise which organises and promotes African cultural workshops for children and families in London. We have been created and running these workshops for almost a year (commenced (May 2016) and have been the face of the social enterprise as we lead the greater vision and impact of Destination Africa in the community.

I am the curator of Listen, Speak & Learn, which creates native African language learning resources for people wanting to learn or develop in African languages. My role in this group is to work as part of a team to produce and provide resources for the online platform and physical DVD resources.

 

What recent achievements (in the last 3 years) are you proud of and why. Give examples of the positive impact you have made in the diaspora and/or on the continent:

I’m proud of the fact that we’ve been able to establish Destination Africa. For a longtime my wife and I felt that local African communities lacked the tools, co-ordination and/or resources to establish grass-roots services which assist children learn about the diverse African cultures and the opportunity to learn about the continent and it’s languages in a setting which also focuses on other core key skills necessary for their development as well-rounded members of society.

The development of the young children has been breathtaking. Opening their eyes and mind to Africa, the opportunities and ability to make an impact in the local and global African communities.

The children who have partook in our workshops are learning about things they often do not learn in school environments and have the opportunity to explore language, learning to speak languages from across the continent. I have heard comments like “If it wasn’t for Destination Africa, I would have learnt an African language”, “I really feel like I’m African”, I know all the countries of Africa”. The impact for these children and families has been the re-engagement and pride of being African.

 

A few words of advice to young leaders (age 5-11):

My advice to young children would be summed up in three things;

Discover - Never think that you know everything, always be ready and prepared to discover new things.

Question - What you have been thought, to ensure you’ve been taught the right thing.

Honour - Your Creator, honour your parents and family and those in your community.

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