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  • Desmond Boateng

Lessons from MentorHackathon 2021 for the year 2022

We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives

John F Kennedy

Every year, we have our annual program, MentorHackathon, which aims to connect mentees and mentors from across Africa by providing a platform for interaction and networking.

MentorHackathon 2021 took place on 20th of November 2021, under the theme Leave The Brakes. The online event had attendees from across the length and breadth of Africa including countries like Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Uganda, Ethiopia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, Mauritius among others. The three main speakers for the event were Mr. Reginald Kumtsiah Turkson, Ms Olivia Tchamba, and Dr. James Luta.

At 4 pm, the program kicked off with a commencement prayer from our Programs & Community Coordinator, Desmond Boateng. We then had our welcome address from our Team-Lead, Mr. George Sarkodie. The program was moderated by Dr. Angela Anima-Korang.

Speaker Sessions

The first speaker, Dr. James Luta talked about "The role of mentoring in talent development". He talked about how mentoring improves one’s talent efficiency and one’s self-awareness. He also emphasized the difference between talent and career, with the former being the ability a person is endowed with by God, and the former being the field a person chooses to work in. He stressed that it is important for every talent to be developed, and stated that mentorship is one of the means by which talent is developed.

Profile of Dr. Luta:

Dr. James Luta, a Lawyer and the Managing Partner of James, Associates & Partners and its affiliated Migrate to Canada Group. Originally from Uganda and currently based in Canada, Dr. Luta is a renowned minority rights activist with a Doctorate in human and group rights. He is currently the national Chairperson of the Canadian Bar International Students’ Association, Vice president of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers (BC Chapter) and Chief Legal Officer of the Canadian Assisted Travel Society.

The second speaker, Ms. Olivia Tchamba, talked about the 'Mindshift for Global Influence'. She mentioned some of the characteristics of people who influence the world, and stated that these are people with vision, uniqueness, identity, and purpose. She also provided some keys needed to influence the world around us, which include leveraging networks, building and maintaining a foundation of trust, and effectively communicating one's vision with clarity and consistency.

Profile of Ms. Tchamba

Ms. Olivia Tchamba, Public Policy Manager, Facebook-Francophone Africa. Olivia is a Cameroonian based in Senegal, and has led and contributed to extensive research work and designed and implemented campaigns to achieve change in organizations like Amnesty International, Front Line Defenders, The Pan African Foundation, and TrustAfrica, among others.

The third and final speaker was Mr. Reginald Kumtsiah Turkson, talked about 'Building Strategic Relationships'. Using the African proverb ‘it takes a village to raise a child’, he advised participants to build this village of relationships which is a network of people who would be needed in the pursuit of one's vision and dreams. He talked about the five main strategic relationships that we need to have, which include a mentor, a sponsor, a partner, a competitor and a mentee.

Profile of Mr. Kumtsiah:

Mr. Reginald Kumtsiah-Turkson, a Human Resource Professional, currently working with Dentsu International as its Group HR & Talents Partner for the Dentsu Group in Ghana. He is the Head of HR and Talents at Denstu Ghana. Mr. Kumstiah also manages Business Risk & Compliance for Ghana, Ivory Coast & Senegal. He loves to give back to the younger generation through mentoring.

Breakout Room Sessions

The speaker-led sessions continued with breakout rooms with the speakers where all mentees for networking and further discussion. After the breakout room session, our closing remarks were given by our Team-Lead and the program ended with a prayer.

It was truly mind-changing and life-sharpening for all participating mentees and mentors.

We can’t wait for MentorHackathon 2022.

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Mary-Anne Laryea
Mary-Anne Laryea
Dec 08, 2022


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