Journey to get to the ANLP 2022
By Katie Pereira-Kotze
The 20th African Nutrition Leadership Programme (ANLP) is underway at the Elgro River Lodge. Although today was the start of the in-person component of ANLP 2022, the official programme started 5 weeks ago, on Thursday 3 February. This year, due to the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ANLP is being facilitated in a blended format, where online sessions have been conducted before participants arrived in Potchefstroom. Also due to safety considerations, there are fewer participants attending and the usual 10-day face-to-face component which will be facilitated over 7 days. This morning, 13 eager participants arrived from 8 different countries. Ten women and 3 men between the ages of 24 to 53 years make up the ANLP 2022 cohort.
Since this ANLP is taking place in stages, we have identified the participant who got the “yellow jersey” and won the main stage of the ‘Tour de ANLP’. On Saturday 5 March at 04:30, Rolly left his home in Yaounde, Cameroon, 80 hours before arriving at the Elgro River Lodge, to begin the journey to get to the face-to-face component of ANLP 2022. Michelle left just half an hour later and the two Cameroonians travelled from Yaounde to Douala (Cameroon) to Brazzaville (Republic of Congo) to Kigali (Rwanda) to Johannesburg (South Africa) to await the remaining international travellers. At a total travel distance of 7742km, this was the second furthest distance travelled by a participant to get to the ANLP. Chinwe from Nigeria is the participant who travelled the furthest, from her home in Abuja, to Addis Ababa, to Johannesburg to Potchefstroom, covering 10485km. At the other end of the spectrum, two local ladies take the cake for travelling the shortest distance to get to ANLP, since they live in Potchefstroom. We are very grateful to Inarie and Theo for leaving their houses on the morning of the start of ANLP and travelling 34km to get to the Elgro River Lodge and we encourage them to attempt to walk this distance over the next 7 days while they are at the ANLP, to show their commitment.
While we are hoping that participants experience a similar journey to previous participants, this year’s journey has a different character. The participants have already displayed great commitment in attending 5 online sessions, completing multiple assessments and assignments, and engaging with fellow participants and facilitators over the past 5 weeks already.
We know that participants are excited to further their leadership and development capabilities during this next stage of the ANLP and we wish them everything of the best over the next 7 days for a fulfilling programme. We would also like to take the opportunity to invite all ANLP alumni to follow the ANLP class of 2022’s journey, through the daily blog posts that will be shared as well as through posts from the ANLP Facebook page. Please feel free to engage with this year’s participants and each other as you reflect on your time and involvement in the ANLP.