WHY DID THE RWANDAN GOVERNMENT OFFER FULL FUNDING TO IBMA 2024 BEFORE IBMA 2023 ENDED?
"It takes a village to grow a child and the world to grow a village."
I am speechless. Overwhelmed.
I need time to process what happened at the IBMA (International Conference On Business Models In Agriculture).
I spent three days with many passionate people, seeing big smiles as I had never seen before at any other conference.
Now the IBMA 2023 conference ended.
I needed a reality check. Every day, I asked attendees for their opinion.
An energetic guy from Jamaica shares his frustration that the World Bank and the African Bank have missed the one agro-event they should have attended.
The others are not frustrated but filled with happiness. They share highly positive feedback and are glad about the good fortune they have for taking part in the IBMA 2023.
How is it possible? How come every one is excited and happy?
As I write those words, I feel too close to the event and too emotional, and therefore, I will share no conclusions or insights, only general brief subjective descriptions.
DAY ONE, the IBMA Scientific Session.
I started early, before the official scientific program, with a translator to French and a Tailor Made presentation to the Senegalese delegation of mayors.
After the meeting/presentation, I note to myself that next time we should be more “French speakers’ friendly” and invite delegations, such as the Senegalese.
Later, students and academic staff present their studies. I am not part of the academy but a student for life; I participate in the session and deliver a presentation.
As the day ended, I noted to myself, "Hooray, overall, the presentations are far more interesting than I ever expected."
The atmosphere is positively charged. I excuse myself that it must be the young spirit of the students.
DAY TWO, the official opening of the IBMA.
I am the keynote speaker. The pressure I feel is indescribable.
I know the content is personal as can be and hence emotional for me. So I practice a lot and print the text in large letters.
It doesn't help; a few minutes into the speech, I find it hard to speak, and tear fall. Now it's hard to breathe, and the vision blurs.
I lose focus; the words start jumping all over the page.
It is well felt in my speech as my voice shutters; I switch words and wrongly pronounce others.
My salvation comes with the last word on the last page. I thank God for a supportive audience who doesn't seem to mind my mistakes.
I never thought one could get emotional at an agro-conference. Now I know it is possible. (Link to the presentation PDF/video)
The following presenters give pride to their presenters and the IBMA 2023 conference. I presented the Dream Valley presentation with a smile; there were no tears this time.
WOW, the scientific committee and organizers did a great job. I am speechless.
This day the audience is older. Yet, passion and emotions are two words that describe the atmosphere at the IBMA conference well.
DAY THREE, the end.
I expect fewer people to attend, lower energy, and less patience. I am wrong; most attendees arrive, and the energy is as good as the day before, with smiling faces and plenty of patience.
The day begins with Ambassador Ibrahim Lawson Fofanah, A Global Peace Ambassador and philanthropist. He shares his family story with the take-home message of - the importance of doing for others.
As he ends his speech and steps down from the podium, he says he’s got a surprise and asks for one more minute. He gets it.
I didn’t see this coming; as he shared the story of our meeting, he announced the Award of Excellence by the ILF Charity Foundation and invited me to accept it.
Humble, I slowly approached the stage, climbed, hugged Ambassador Fofanah, and shed tears for the second time at the IBMA conference.
Then, Mr. Isaac Kagara, the IBMA President, is invited to receive an award for his activity.
When the day ends, people don't want to leave. As it was in the first two days, we left the fantastic facilities of Rwanda's Convention Center nearly two hours after the official closing.
Now, I need time to rest and process.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
If you participated in the IBMA 2023 conference, I would appreciate it if you send me a short message (email/WhatsApp) sharing –
· Your overall impression.
· Your take-home message.
· After the conference, how did you describe it to your friends?
· What are you going to do differently now?
P.s., please send me the link/s to what you posted on the social platforms during or after the conference.
If you didn't participate in the IBMA 2023 conference, you can watch or read my keynote speech and decide if you want to join the IBMA 2024.
I have good news for you;
Following the IBMA 2023 success, Rwanda's government has committed to finance the IBMA 2024 if the IBMA management chooses this site.
The IBMA management has returned a positive answer. Hence, mark your calendars for March 2024 to attend the IBMA 2024. More information to come.
Ø WHEN you put your mind and heart into your work, reality may exceed your best dreams.
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See you soon,
Text me: at +972-54-2523425 (WhatsApp), or email email@example.com
If you missed it, here is a link to last week's blog, "Why The IBMA Conference Became A Success Before It Opened?"
Link to recent columns.
Dream Valley is a field-proven disruptive business model based on the successful Israeli model. Contact me if you view yourself as a potential investor, business partner, or client. Email, +972-542523425 (WhatsApp/Text)
Please look at the video series “The Agricultural Gap." I explain the historical roots of the agricultural gap between African and Western countries with short videos.
I see this video series as "uncompleted," as I am waiting to gain more confidence before completing the chapters with The Solution, as I perceive it.
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Change Begins With A Decision
That The Existing Reality Is A Choice
And Not A Decree of Fate