AFOMA (meaning “Goodwill” in the Igbo language) was created out of the need to impact humanity by enabling individuals to lift themselves out of poverty. AFOMA’s sister organization AZONETA is a registered charity in Canada with its purpose focused on poverty alleviation, zero hunger, quality education, good health and well-being across sub-Saharan Africa. Through the work AZONETA conducts it became apparent that there needs to be a more permanent and sustainable solution than simply treating the symptom of a more deeply rooted issue.
Since the AFOMA project commenced in August 2021, our team has grown from a few members to twenty, spread across many disciplines with the core advisory team committed to leveraging technology for good.
Across developing regions in Africa, we see the challenges faced by micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) to scale within and beyond their local economy. This is the direct result of a lack of investment, digitization, and access to business financing and the global market. In fact, the World Bank’s Enterprise Survey identifies the lack of access to finance as one of the biggest obstacles for MSMEs in the informal economy.
At AFOMA, we want to build an ecosystem that will enable and promote micro and digital entrepreneurship for artists and artisans across Africa. However, as our organization began to grow to include members from different backgrounds, cultures and races, we found the need to expand our vision beyond Africa.
To achieve this vision, we would need to leverage emerging technological solutions in a responsible way to drive social impact and solve real world complex issues.
We decided that AFOMA will be an ecosystem that will bring an end-to-end solution that will enhance the informal economy within the creative and handicraft space and also lead this economy into the future.
This will include the following solutions within this ecosystem.
- A micro-loans program - where we can leverage our treasury within the AFOMA Foundation to support MSMEs. This will offer artists, artisans and micro entrepreneurs across the globe access to capital in the form of micro-loans to either start or grow their businesses.
- A micro-worker program - to create employment opportunities where individuals will be incentivized for performing micro tasks that support the AFOMA ecosystem. Such tasks may include the support of illiterate and non-technologically savvy artisans and artists across the globe in onboarding their products to our multi-vendor handicraft marketplace, SELLITIC.
- A blockchain integrated multi-vendor handicraft marketplace - our Web2.0 marketplace, SELLITIC, where artists and artisans will be able to list their products and gain direct access to the global handicraft market. On SELLITIC, we will reduce barriers of entry and operations for these artists and artisans by introducing cryptocurrency as a form of payment. In addition, our native token will allow for a creator economy where artists and artisans will be incentivized for engaging in good business practices. The AFOMA token will also enable an ownership economy through decentralization and governance, allowing our artists and artisans to have a voice in the AFOMA ecosystem.
- A non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace - we will introduce ORUVAN, which will represent artwork and other artisanal products that exist on SELLITIC, and where cultural and heritage skills preservation can be advanced through the adoption of NFTs. By utilizing the features of NFT tokenization, we can preserve rare cultural and exceptional assets from the developing world and in addition, help artists attain financial freedom.
- A metaverse world - afomaland will allow us to extend our social impact and overall vision at AFOMA which will include projecting SELLITIC and ORUVAN in the metaverse. Through this experience, we will lead and offer Africa and other marginalized regions the ability to partake within the metaverse. This will not only break cultural and economic barriers, but also build a human connection across races which we hope will help address racial disparities and ensure the informal economy is part of the future. In addition, afomaland will be the foundation for partners that are aligned with building and solving real world problems. We intend to be a difference maker when it comes to the metaverse by building a coalition of innovators that plan to build and drive social change.
Finally, as we achieve this mission and become profitable, we intend to donate to initiatives and programs aligned with United Nations Sustainable Development Goals as part of our commitment to support the 2030 Catalyst global movement.
In short, our mission is:
To enable creatives across Africa and the globe by utilizing a utility-based token that drives a purpose-driven ecosystem.
At AFOMA, our core values drive every decision we make regarding product and operations. We believe our values will ingrain in us, a sense of ethics that will bring value to the communities we are engaged with.
- Impact First — A lot of innovative organizations today are primarily focused on making profit and over time lose the value and commitment made to their users and community. On day one, we made a commitment that we would be focused on community building and value creation for our community and partners. As a social enterprise, we pride ourselves on being impact driven and we will stay committed to building a long term impact strategy for decades to come.
- Integrity — Staying true to the commitments made to our community is paramount. Even in times of crisis, we will maintain this core value at AFOMA. We understand the importance of this value because it is the basis of what AFOMA was founded on. Trust, built through integrity between us and our community and users will remain our key focus.
- Transparency — Through being transparent, we will maintain our integrity with our community of artists, artisans, users and partners, especially from a social impact and humanitarian perspective. This was one of the reasons we adopted blockchain technology.
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