Celebrating Africa Day, virtually

An annual celebration of African unity, Africa Day commemorates the founding of the African Union. Now, in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, thinking about a “Borderless Africa: Celebrating Commonalities” has a special resonance.

We’re lending our support to the (virtual) festivities, as well as to fundraising efforts in support of aid organizations.

We are kicking things off with the Africa Day Benefit Concert At Home, in partnership with Viacom and MTV Base. The two-hour special on YouTube, hosted by Idris Elba, will bring together multiple African artists: Angelique Kidjo, Burna Boy, Sauti Sol, Sho Madjozi, Diamond Platnumz and more. The concert showcases the continent’s music during a month-long campaign to support UNICEF and the UN World Food Program in providing food assistance to Africans affected by COVID-19.

If the concert leaves you wanting more, head over to YouTube Music and check out our Africa Day playlist: Between the afrobeat, a bit of house and African soul, you’ll be getting a musical tour of the continent from your home. Along with contemporary artists like Eddy Kenzo, Lady Zamar, Sauti Sol and Wizkid, it also draws from the sounds of great African voices past, such as Fela Kuti, Hugh Masekela and Johnny Clegg.

For more of our shared cultural heritage and creativity, visit the online exhibit 11 Ways to Celebrate Africa Day at Google Arts & Culture. Discover what unites us across art, food, music, fashion, people, landmarks and more. Peruse the collections of 26 cultural institutions, or use search tools like color and time to explore over 15,000 photographs.. Get the party started with a hearty bowl of jollof rice, visit the Great Pyramid of Giza, feel the beat of the African drum, and zoom into the intricate beadwork of a Ndebele cape. Or turn your home into a gallery: with Art Projector you can virtually place the artwork of Mary Ogembo in your living room—or just turn your living room into Tanzania’s Gereza Fort through augmented reality.

Happy Africa Day from all of us at Google Africa.

Charles Murito, Director, Government Affairs and Public Policy, SSA