The 2019 ASA GALA
Black women in Sci-Fi
Raffles, Networking, Performances

On Friday 15th March we held our 2019 fundraising Gala at the African Centre in London. It was a delightful celebration of the African Science Academy and it was especially wonderful that we had 4 alumni who are currently studying at Edinburgh University down in London for the event. We also had the privilege to have one of our current ASA students at the event, who was participating in an exchange programme with St Paul’s Girls School.

On arrival, guests were welcomed by an amazing exhibition on black women in Sci Fi, created by students from ADA College in London.  

The focus of the evening was to celebrate the ASA students and so they took centre stage, with amazing performances from dance, poetry to a wonderful song entitled ‘African Woman’. We also had speeches by Efua Adabie (Headteacher) and Tom Ilube (Founder and Chair), as well as, a presentation by the two St Paul’s Girls students who had visited ASA in December, together with Emily, their exchange partner from Ghana. Finally we had a panel discussion with the ASA students who answered questions about their time at the school.

We had so exciting raffle and auction prizes donated by the following organisations:

  • A Bolga basket and textiles book from The African Fabric Shop
  • A collection of natural soaps by Friendly Soap  
  • An African print headscarf from Knots UK
  • A piece of African print stylish clothing from Mam-Maw
  • A selection of books by African authors by Orbit
  • An array of African music CDs from Sterns Music  
  • Copies of some brilliant signed books from Zadie Smith
  • Selection of books from The Edinburgh Bookshop
  • A sculpture made from Zimbabwean serpentine stone from African Kitchen Gallery
  • 2 tickets for a Black History river cruise from  Black Hisotry Walks
  • A hamper by Award-winning hairstylist Charlotte Mensahs own Manketti Oil products
  • A signed version of an early manuscript for Swing Time by Zadie Smith   

Thank you for all of these donations!

In addition, we had handmade jewellery by our very own ASA alumna, Aisha, and an anonymous donation of framed pictures on the night, which we added to the raffle. Throughout the evening we had delicious West African cuisine by Soul Delish and we ended the evening with wonderful music.

In total we had around 120 guests attend and raised more than £34,000.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the event. It was wonderful to have you there and we appreciate your support.


Blogpost written by Helen Denyer.

Photography by Barbara from