Grant to Provide Fundraising Training, Other Advancement Initiatives for 19 African Institutions

Grantees in this story

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) has received a two-year, US$450,000 grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York to provide resources and training in fundraising and alumni development to 19 universities in Africa.

As part of the grant, CASE will provide online training courses, in-person conferences and various tools and resources for vice chancellors, deans and professionals who work in fundraising and alumni relations at the 19 universities. The training will be tailored to meet the varying advancement needs of these institutions; online training and in-person conferences will be available for a fee to advancement professionals at any African university. 

Since 2003, CASE has received about $1.5 million from the Carnegie Corporation, including this latest $450,000 grant, as part of an initiative by the foundation to strengthen higher education in Africa. Specifically, the Carnegie Corporation has worked with CASE and other organizations to help universities build an infrastructure for raising funds to cope with increasing costs and declining government support. To date, nearly 120 African universities from 11 countries have participated in CASE conferences held in Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda. CASE has also helped institutions establish advancement shops. 

CASE’s work with the latest grant will support the Carnegie Corporation’s efforts to help train and retain young academics. Many postgraduate and doctoral students face financial challenges in completing their studies, and African universities often lack the necessary resources, including up-to-date research equipment and facilities, to attract and keep the next generation of academics. The CASE training will be geared toward helping the 19 universities secure philanthropic support to fund post‑graduate scholarships, student support and upgrading their research infrastructure. 

CASE’s work to strengthen and build advancement operations at African universities benefits CASE members worldwide, says John Lippincott, president of CASE. 

“As CASE works with organizations around the world, all members benefit from the rising profile of advancement,” says Lippincott. “This growing awareness of advancement helps build understanding and support of the important work of our educational institutions and of the alumni relations, communications, fundraising and marketing professionals who work on their behalf.” 

Amir Pasic, vice president of international operations for CASE, notes that CASE’s long-term partnership with the Carnegie Corporation has played a significant role in the successful introduction of advancement to many institutions in Africa. 

 “The promise of Africa hinges on continued investment in the talent that runs its educational institutions and the communities that nurture them,” says Pasic. “CASE is honored to partner with a leading global foundation to embrace the energy and enthusiasm we have encountered among our African colleagues. 

Select resources will also be available to other African universities to help extend the impact and growth of the advancement profession in Africa where institutions account for 7 percent of CASE membership outside of North America. 

Background/Additional Information: 

• 2004-2010—During this time, CASE has worked with six African institutions in Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda and Tanzania with support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York.  

o The six institutions are: the University of Education, Winneba, in Ghana; Ahmadu Bello University, Obafemi Awolowo University and the University of Jos in Nigeria; the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania; and Makerere University in Uganda. 

o These institutions encouraged CASE to invite other African institutions to participate in the training, noting that a critical mass of institutions engaged in higher education advancement creates more advancement peers for them to turn to for support and instills a sense of normalcy in the broader public around educational fundraising.  

o Nearly 120 African institutions from 11 countries have participated in at least one CASE conference held in Africa. 

• 2008—Carnegie Corporation awarded a two-year, US$400,000 grant to CASE to further establish and develop educational advancement programs at the six universities. 

o With the Carnegie grant that expired in June 2010, CASE held conferences in Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda for advancement professionals, vice chancellors, bursars and finance directors and other senior university administrators. The grant also enabled advancement professionals at African institutions to attend CASE training in the U.K.

• 2011—Carnegie Corporation awarded a two-year, $450,000 grant to CASE to work with 19 institutions that are participating in the new phase of the corporation’s support for African higher education.

o In addition to in-person conferences on fundraising and alumni relations, planned initiatives include a series of online training courses that will feature a course tutor—a senior fundraising consultant charged with providing advice and follow-up support to “ensure that the learning translates into action.” 

o Training for mature advancement programs will focus on issues such as gift reporting, campaign planning and working with volunteers rather than fundraising technique. 

o While the 19 Carnegie-supported institutions will have access to the tutor, the online series and conferences are open to any African institutions for a fee. 

About CASE


Headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in London, Singapore and Mexico City, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education is the professional organization for advancement professionals at all levels who work in alumni relations, communications, fundraising, marketing and other areas.

Today, CASE's membership includes more than 3,400 colleges, universities, independent elementary and secondary schools, and educational associates in 74 countries around the world. This makes CASE one of the largest nonprofit education associations in terms of institutional membership. It serves more than 64,000 advancement professionals on the staffs of its member institutions.

CASE helps its members build stronger relationships with their alumni and donors, raise funds for campus projects, produce recruitment materials, market their institutions to prospective students, diversify the profession, and foster public support of education.

CASE also offers a variety of advancement products and services, provides standards and an ethical framework for the profession, and works with other organizations to respond to public issues of concern while promoting the importance of education worldwide.