Farmer's Weekly (South Africa)
SA Harvest’s Ali Conn recognised among Africa’s 100 Brightest Young Minds
SA Harvest’s Ali Conn has been awarded the prestigious accolade of being among Africa’s 100 Brightest Young Minds. This initiative is endorsed and supported by the African contingent of the UN World Food Programme, which underscores the significance and impact of BYM in Africa and around the world.
Brightest Young Minds (BYM), a prestigious awards organisation, aims to identify and honour young individuals who are making a positive impact in their fields and communities, and to provide them with a platform to showcase their work and achievements.
The organisation is committed to supporting the growth and development of young talent in Africa and creating a brighter future for all.
CONTRIBUTION TO HUNGER RELIEF
As a recipient of this award, Conn has been recognised for his exceptional contribution to food-rescue and hunger-relief organisation SA Harvest. The organisation is dedicated to improving food security and nutrition in South Africa through a unique model of food rescue and systemic intervention. Its ultimate goal is to end hunger in South Africa.
Conn’s selection as one of Africa’s 100 Brightest Young Minds is testament to his hard work, dedication, and impact, both through his involvement with SA Harvest and his individual achievements.
Conn is a former creative producer who previously worked on international productions, including X Factor
UK, Nitro Circus and Afropunk, and has also worked with Qatar’s leading independent production house, servicing documentaries for television networks like National Geographic and Animal Planet.
In addition, he has worked with The Rolling Stones, Ed Sheeran, and Cristiano Ronaldo.
In 2015, he changed tack to respond to the dire hunger crisis in South Africa and founded the non-profit food charity UPcycle Project, which was later invited to become part of the Western Cape’s greening initiatives.
Then in 2019, Conn joined SA Harvest. He champions innovation, design and storytelling, amplifies SA Harvest’s voice where it matters, and has contributed to the organisation having rescued 11 million kilograms of food and delivering 36 million meals to communities in need, in just 39 months. In 2022, Conn was chosen for the Mail
& Guardian’s list of 200 Young South Africans, and Africa’s 100 Brightest Young Minds by the BYM organisation.
Speaking about the latter, Conn says: “It’s incredibly humbling to have been selected for this award; however, it is the SA Harvest team that deserves the recognition. What the team has done over the past three years is absolutely breathtaking.
“Each and every one of the SA Harvest team members are my inspiration and I’m so proud to be part of a team that’s changing the country’s food landscape for the betterment of all South Africans.”
According to Alan Browde, CEO and founder of SA Harvest: “Ali Conn is not only exceptionally bright, he is also an unusual, out-of-the-box thinker. This attribute, combined with his powerful creativity, has made a significant impact on SA Harvest’s ability to make a difference to millions of lives over the years.
“He deserves this accolade, and the SA Harvest team is proud of him.”