Africa Legal co-founder Scott Cowan reflects on a year no-one wants to remember but which will never be forgotten. Despite everything, Scott writes, it will be a sense of community and collaboration that will keep us all moving forward.
Covid, self isolation, lockdowns, the tier system, social distancing - all words that this year have become part of our vocabulary. And, of course, with these words come suffering and loss and destruction across the globe. Now, at a time when we all take stock, we must remember and pray for those who have lost their loved ones, their livelihoods and their health during this uncertain and terrible time.
As we head into 2021, all of us at Africa Legal, like in businesses and organisations everywhere, are reflecting on the future and what it holds. I ask myself time and time again, “What can I do better? What can I do that will make a little difference to someone’s life?”
At Africa Legal our mission remains unchanged. We want to touch the lives and careers of legal professionals across the continent. And, we want to do this by providing a platform that showcases African talent and how, by working together, Africa is open for business.
Before Covid brought the world to a standstill, we hosted a GC Forum at this year’s Investing in Mining Indaba in Cape Town. The pandemic meant this was one of our last in-person events but, even so, we have stayed on what has become a rollercoaster ride! This is showing how, by using technology, the Africa Legal community is wonderfully collaborative and that this has enabled many to do business this year through our network.
On the personal front, we have had our struggles and our joys. Wendy Bampton, my partner in business and life, and I were married recently in a small ceremony in London that was very low key and short on friends and family, but we did it! This was a life moment we wanted to share with my mother who, in recent months, has been fighting a battle with cancer.
To everyone in our community, the support you have shown us has been incredible and for this we say “THANK-YOU”! The new year comes with incredible plans and we hope that soon we will be able to be physically closer together. In the meantime though, technology like TEAMS and Zoom and, yes, dare I say it, even Facebook, have become blessings. At least we have a way to reach out and still have a sense of the other.
This year we will be working with several major new clients. We have recently welcomed the UK’s Ministry of Justice, Rwanda Finance Limited (owned by the government of Rwanda), Liquid Telecom, Africa Oil Week and the The Scottish Africa Business Association (SABA) into the Africa Legal family.
I would also like to thank each and every one of our users for continuing to support Africa Legal and to all our wonderful and supportive clients (you know who you are) a massive thank-you for your belief and trust in the brand.
My co-founder (and wife) Wendy Cowan and I would like to raise a glass to you and your families and wish you all health and happiness as we head into another year of uncertainty. We know that the Africa Legal community we have brought together will always pull together to make sure that, no matter what, we will always keep moving forward.
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