Afrofinns Gala Night 2022

Date: 26th November 2022

Venue: Suomenlinna Helsinki
Time: 17.00 - 23.58



Afrofinns Ry is an independent, nonprofit association. Our core value is to promote diversity, inclusion, cultural development and encourage a proactive civic engagement. We engage members in diverse events, empowering the community towards self-resilience. Our core mission is to elevate, encourage and support more self-reliance within the community.


Towards the development of these objectives, Afrofinns Ry in celebration of the excellence in this community organizes an annual gala night. The aim is to consistently promote and celebrate the enormous talent, accomplishments and significant contributions of people of African descent in Finland. We aim further to encourage, out of the box thinking and continuously challenge ourselves to attain even higher goals.

By celebrating their achievements, we hope to register our participation as essential to growth and development in Finland. In addition, it will act as a motivation and re-affirmation that we see you and we appreciate you.


This year we have the utmost honor to be joined by the most Italian of the African owned restaurants in Finland Nomad Food and Wine and by its chef Paco N´diaye. Nomadic cuisine is a food-lover’s journey - it’s storytelling on a plate. Paco N´diaye combines the techniques and philosophy of Italian cuisine with African flavors and Nordic influences, respecting his rich culinary past and love for food.

The dinner will cost 65€ per person. By paying for your dinner you will be supporting Nomad Food and Wine, and also ensuring the continuation of this gala night as a tradition. Please find attached, a copy of the menu by Nomad Food and Wine. All information on how to get to the location will be made available late October.

The Hosts

Aja Daffeh: Host
Aja Daffehh is a Gambian who became public after Winning Finland's first Face of African Queen beauty contest in 2020. She's a a social media influencer, a supermodel, assistant for the brand called @remixgear and also work for various charity programs. After her winning of @missafrodiasporafinland 2020, her career has taken of by storms, she has been featured in different Finnish news papers and tv series such as Yle's Sinkut paljaana series, where she talks about the biggest trauma of her life. She underwent female circumcision at the age of 4. The reason why she decided to talk about mutilation openly, is because, she felt that it's not been talked about enough in Finland, she wanted to be an advocate for the voice of the voiceless, by speaking out about, the trauma most girls go through in the Gambia and other African countries. She also felt the importance, why it's necessary to talk about it openly, she wants people to be aware of the pain and trauma, it would cost in girls life and also wanted to spare others the pain and trauma she had to endure.
Kristopher Jackson: Host
Kristopher Jackson DEI and Business Consultant/ Scandinavian hunks member. Has extensive experience in consulting and strategic DEI work. Passions include helping spearhead the efforts of advancing DEI from both societal and bussiness points of views. Previously Kristopher has worked at 'Inklusiiv' in-Strategic partnerships, and at 'DEIDEI (company) as a DEI and Business consultant. Also has worked in such mangement consulting firms as Catapult International, Bain and Company, and BCG. Expertise includes- Diversity, equity and inclusion in organizations, DEI strategic transformation, anti-racism, inclusive leadership and belonging.

The Team

Elvis fuamba: Event Coordinator
Chrispin Kinabo: Event Coordinator
Lucy Odekhiran: Venue Coordinator
Liz Ndegwa: Program Coordinator
Neo Obinwa: Venue Coordinator
Ciku Ndegwa: Program Coordinator
Party Ruanda: Program Coordinator
Diallo Alimou: Hospitality Coordinator
Paula Kangas: Marketing and Merchandising Coordinator
Ricahrd Dean: Marketing and Merchandising Coordinator
Annabella Koskinen: Program Coordinator
Enoch Gyasi: Program/Hospitality Coordinator
Monica Suarez: Consulting-Banding
Neelson Fuamba: IT

The Awards

The Gala night will be highlighted by the presentation of 13 individual awards to members of the community selected by our board and a few other partners. These individuals have demonstrated competence and leadership in their respective fields.


The 13 individual awards are represented in the following categories:

1. Youth Achievement

Youth Achievement Awards are delivered by inspiring partner organisations or individual in our network. They are adaptable, youth led framework which can be applied to almost any activity or anywhere young people engage in activities that interest them. We designed the awards to meet the needs of young Afrofinns by providing much needed recognition for the work young people do and closing the attainment gap.

2. Community leadership

Designed to recognize the best in a variety of community engagement categories, the Community Leadership Award, recognizes outstanding achievements in community, collaboration and active volunteering in various frameworks of the Afrofinns community. This leadership may be demonstrated in a variety of ways, through both formal and informal roles, including appointed, elected, or volunteer positions. The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by a guest of honour.

3. Friends of Africa Award

The Ally of Africa award has been renamed the IDEA award.
It’s never been more important for society to celebrate diversity and demonstrate inclusion. We want to recognised and celebrate those beyond the limits of our community that are really excelling at this. The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by guests of honour.

4. Career

The Career Achievement Award recognize people who have demonstrated innovative and responsible professional leadership and the potential for future distinction in their respective fields. and a commitment to serving others . The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by a guests of honour.

5. Performing arts

Performing Arts Award recognize the work of experienced artists who have made remarkable contributions to the performing arts in Finland. Broadcasting, classical music, dance, film, popular music and theatre etc. The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by a guest of honour.

6. Sports

The award is open to individuals who are currently competing in sport at a high and national level. It is also recognize and promote the talent and effort and contribution of parent, coach, club, school or college.

7. Literary Award

Award presented in recognition of a particularly lauded literary piece , body of work or initiative.

8. Visual arts

The visual arts Award recognize artistic achievement, excellence in fine crafts and outstanding contribution to visual arts in Finland.

9. Entertainment

Bringing recognition to achievement, talent and personal excellence within the themed entertainment industry. Providing a positive incentive also for new entertainers to perfect their skills, to build a strong foundation of confidence that will benefit them, not only in their present acting career, but also in whatever path they wish to follow in their future. The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by a guest of honour.

10. Social media influencer

Social Media Awards celebrates those that are crashing through the algorithms and channelizing views to create innovative, meaningful engagement that produces tangible results for the society in general.

11. Music

This award is given for skill or distinction in music

12. Academics

The Academic Achievement Award encourages academic excellences, important scholarly contributions and encourages academically gifted individuals who have completed there education.

13. Life time Achievement

The lifetime achievement award, recognize contributions over the whole of a career, rather than or in addition to single contributions, of Longstanding Afrofinns who have continually dedicated much of their professional career to the advancement of the Afro-finnish. For decades, these extraordinary members have repeatedly volunteered time and effort serving for the betterment of the Society. The award is presented at the Annual Afrofinns Gala Night by a guest of honour.

Venues Access

HSL ferries are part of the public transport system, and they connect the fortress with the mainland on all days of the year, with services from early morning to late at night. The duration of the journey is about 15 minutes, and tickets are available from the ticket vending machine on the quay side or the HSL application. The ferry departs from the Kauppatori Market Square and arrives at the main quay of Suomenlinna.

Port of Departure to all Guests

The Kauppatori Market Square is the only quay that operates to Suomenlinna on the weekend. The last boat from Suomenlinna to Helsinki leaves at 2:00 am.

We advance that all guests must leave the venue after the event between 00:00 to 1:00am. The venue must be emptied and all people must be out by 1.45 as the alarm will go on at 2 a.m.

All guests must have a valid ticket to use the ferry to and from Suomenlinna. Helsinki monthly ticket, one-day ticket (8€), or a single ticket which last for an hour (2,80€) can be used at the ferry.

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