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Sankofa Intergenerational Learning Hub

The Sankofa Intergenerational Learning Hub was an innovative 17 month Erasmus+ adult learning project. It aimed to establish a creative intergenerational learning space through which 5 different but interconnected learning programmes were offered to younger and older community leaders, change agents and social activists from Black and Minoritised communities. 

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Quotes from project contributors

“I came into the Sankofa Intergenerational Learning Hub’s Appreciative Leadership Training in Athens with an open-mind. This was not the first time I participated in a course run by Ubele, so I knew what to expect from the organisation and felt confident that I would learn a lot, would be in a group of like-minded people and enjoy deep meaningful conversations. One word stayed with me throughout the week: “mentorship”.” 

— Appreciative Leadership Course participant

Sankofa project provided a real opportunity for Black and Minoritised communities to begin succession planning, create ideas and build trust and confidence between generations. The international definition of intergenerational programmes suggest that they ‘…..are vehicles for the purposeful and ongoing exchange of resources and learning among older and younger generations for individual and social benefits'.  

The recognition and embracing of the 'Sankofa' (a bird from the Twi tribe in Ghana) allows for surfacing, sharing, recognition, acknowledgment, celebration and integration of learning processes and ways of knowing which stem from the Global South. These are often incorporated into new creative processes but often go unrecognised. 


That bird is wise. 


Its’ beak back turned picks for the present what is best from ancient eyes 

Then steps forward, on ahead 

To meet the future undeterred 

Sankofa is an Akan term that literally means, "to go back and get it." 

One of the Adinkra symbols for Sankofa (seen on the left) depicts a mythical bird flying forward with its head turned backward. The egg in its mouth represents the "gems" or knowledge of the past upon which wisdom is based; it also signifies the generation to come that would benefit from that wisdom. 

This symbol often is associated with the proverb, "It is not wrong to go back for that which you have forgotten." 

The Akan believe that the past illuminates the present and that the search for knowledge is a life-long process. 

READ: The Sankofa Intergenerational Learning Hub: Writings on a Journey 

Part 1 | Part 2

 This project was co-funded by European Commission within Erasmus+ Programme. 

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