The Africa Climate Action Initiative (ACAI) works alongside African communities on the front lines of climate change to adapt, mitigate and build resilience. Our mission is to enhance the climate mitigation and adaptation response of African nations and their communities, while building solidarity between Canadian and African communities tackling climate change.
Africa is the continent the most vulnerable to climate change, despite accounting for under 4 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions. Climate change acts as a threat multiplier to existing challenges, including food insecurity, water scarcity, waterborne diseases, governance challenges and conflicts across the continent.
Hundreds of millions of people are being impacted. 70 percent of the total African population depends on agriculture, with 95 percent of this food production relying on rainfall. Increasingly uncertain rainfall and extreme weather patterns are having severe ramifications for food security, poverty eradication, and the achievement and maintenance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
We believe Africa has the resources it needs to confront these challenges and lead the way towards a healthy and regenerative future. ACAI works with partners to support the advancement of the initiatives underway across the continent.
ACAI works with a range of partners to strengthen the climate change response across Africa and in Canada.
Our work is grounded on the following pillars:
Community for Climate Action North Etobicoke (CCAN) | January – May, 2021
Action begins with knowledge and collaboration. ACAI is piloting a multi-stakeholder community partnership model to engage and train community members in North Etobicoke, Toronto, Canada to take action in the City’s key emissions areas – buildings and energy, transportation, and waste management.
Funded by the City of Toronto and Enbridge, and trusteed by the Rexdale Women’s Centre, the project aims to strengthen the efforts and capacity of local community agencies, grassroots groups, and resident leaders championing environmental and community well-being; and to reach newcomers, international students, and diverse community members. We are proud to support our community members in North Etobicoke and to work alongside TransformTO’s objective to “activate people and resources to take action on climate change” through knowledge, capacity and support. You are part of the climate solution.
To see the projects we support, please visit the links above. ACAI also engages in capacity building training, knowledge sharing, community building and fundraising activities. Previous initiatives:
Projects under the Africa Climate Action Initiative are made possible through the fundraising efforts of the ACAI Affiliate Community who raise funds to support community projects and climate action and coordinate efforts to build capacity and share knowledge within the African development community.
Sarah Kamau is a change agent and social entrepreneur. She is passionate about championing for the rights of the less privileged through advocacy and community development. While living in Kenya, she graduated with a Bachelors of Education (Arts) from the University of Nairobi and worked in various national and international organizations in refugee camps and in the humanitarian field. Through these experiences, Sarah has witnessed firsthand loss of lives and livelihoods, and forced migration due to climate change. Currently, Sarah is working as co-founder and co-coordinator of the Africa Climate Action Initiative (ACAI), a CAP Network initiative to coordinate and build the capacity of African communities and partners to adapt to and mitigate climate change.
As co-founder and co-coordinator of the Africa Climate Action Initiative, Katie builds partnerships and communities of solidarity for human and ecological security. She is also co-founder and communications director of the Rainmaker Enterprise, which develops solar-powered water solutions for human consumption and regenerative agriculture, as well as an officer of the Canada Africa Partnership (CAP) Network. As an ambassador of the Institute for Economics and Peace, Katie advocates for the value of peaceful and sustainable communities. Katie holds an MA in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London, and a BA in Peace, Conflict and Justice Studies from the University of Toronto.
Loice Kasande is humanitarian advocate with over 10 years of experience in non profit management in Uganda. Loice currently works as a Community Services Worker supporting chronically homeless adults including those who experience barriers to services due to physical and mental health, substance use, social isolation and abuse in Toronto. She is also a Founder and Director of Africa Women Incubation and Innovation Hub (AWIIH), an organization that seeks to address past adversaries that have impaired women’s dreams, identifying and guiding the woman through discovering her potential. Loice is also co-founder of the International School of Modelling Uganda, which supports youth by developing art and talent so as to broaden their opportunities to earn income for self sustainability. Loice holds a Master of Arts in Development Studies and believes that building the capacity of the community, and empowering women and youth, will not only uplift the economy but will boost efforts towards advancing the climate change agenda. Being part of ACAI gives Loice an opportunity to advocate for ending gender inequality which is a significant roadblock to the climate change agenda. Applying my community work experience in Africa gives me an edge to support in capacity building and resource allocation of our partner organizations that will create lasting best practices towards climate change mitigation and adaptation.
As the Communications Coordinator for ACAI, Tandeep has the pleasure to work with people who are conscious about their environment and climate. Her role involves overlooking the different communication aspects of the organization that has given her the opportunity to voice her passion and advocate for the protection of climate and help build a sustainable future. Tandeep holds a MA in International Relations from the University of Sheffield, England and a PG in International Development from the Humber College, Toronto. In the past, she has worked in the development sector in India, England and France overlooking projects in primary education, women empowerment and capacity building.
Bienvenu Ongoundou is a Gabonese entrepreneur and passionate sustainable development agent. As Founder and Manager of SME Winpartners, and Manager of Energie Solaire Afrique (ESA), Bienvenu specializes in renewable energy solutions and LED lighting. As Secretary General of the Association for a Progressive African Youth (AJAP Africaine) in Gabon, Bienvenu leads youth entrepreneurship development and socio-economic integration. Through AJAP, Bienvenu convened a workshop to create a national plan for housing energy renovation in Gabon. As Deputy National Coordinator for Renewable Energy of the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) Gabon, Bienvenu leads multilateral negotiations for climate justice. Before his entrepreneurial career, Bienvenu trained in petroleum production and HSE standards in Congo Brazzaville, and worked as a service provider to the Congolese refinery (CORAF). Born into modest beginnings in Franceville, Bienvenu is passionate about community development and committed to social action through solar electrification, village solar water, and solar public lighting.
Paul Stevers, Co-founder, ClimateSAN and President/CEO, Think Renewables Group. Paul Stevers is a Canadian engineer, inventor, and the founder of several for-profit and non-profit businesses. After graduating from the University of Waterloo engineering program in Ontario, Canada, Paul launched his entrepreneurial career by co-founding an environmental business in 1984 called Impax Incorporated. In 1992, he joined a US-based company called Bio-Oxidation Inc. to lead the development of a new medical waste processing technology, which became the next generation of a system he had created with Impax Incorporated. As part of the management team of Bio-Oxidation, he helped raise over US$10,000,000 from investors, build this company and then sell it to a large public corporation. After this company was sold, he co-founded a consulting company called Oxidation Technologies, Inc., which focused on enhancing medical waste processing technologies. After the tragic events that unfolded on September 11, 2001, Paul decided to change direction and explore how to best help counter violent extremism in unstable areas of the world in addition to operating his consulting business. He began to spend an increasing amount of time on this issue and, over the next several years, he invested over a million dollars to develop and demonstrate ways to combine available technologies and renewable resources to help stabilize conflict zones around the world. Initially, the focus area was Afghanistan, and it now includes parts of Africa. Paul founded CharityHelp International (CHI) in 2004 to facilitate long-term financial support for children in developing countries by enabling sponsors to build relationships with these children via supervised communications over the Internet and pay for their sponsorship online. In 2010, he founded Think Renewables, Inc. in the US to develop a series of computer-related products that are designed to operate in challenging environments such as Afghanistan and parts of Africa. These products are now being used in several areas including education, commerce, and telemedicine. In 2014, Paul founded Think Renewables Group to help coordinate the operations of his various companies, further develop the group’s technologies and services and raise money to scale-up its operations. In 2018, he co-founded the Climate Solutions Advancement Network (ClimateSAN) to help increase investment in solutions that mitigate or adapt to climate change (Climate Solutions). In 2020, he co-founded the Africa Climate Action Initiative (ACAI) and is now a member of its steering committee that helps guide the development of this initiative.
Laurent-Mascar Ngoma is an agro-environmentalist and development practitioner with 25 years of national and international experience in climate change, adaptation, environment and sustainable development programme formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. He has led over 80 international missions for countries’ support and capacity-building, seminars, workshops and conferences on climate change and sustainable development (including the COPs under UNFCCC). For the past decade, Laurent has served as UN specialist in Climate Change Adaptation – as Programme Manager, Director, Chief Technical Advisor, National Technical Supervisor, and Senior Expert for environment, climate and sustainable development in the SIDS and Sub-Saharan Africa. Laurent is a church youth leader, mentor, and capacity-builder. Previously he was an activist in a student democratic movement (1990), President of the UK Tank Alternative Congo (2005-2010), Honorary President of various development NGOs, Director of US-based Nehemiah (2015-2018), and Founder and Past President (2016-2018) of Rotary of Ossobo in Sao Tome and Principe.