The African Calling Project testifies to the power and relevance of Sociology to make a positive difference. Africa Calling engages with Charles Wright Mills’ (1959) concept of Sociological Imagination. Specifically, it engages and inspires people to stop being cheerful robots and network with others to harness the power of social relationships to solve social problems and change lives. 

Dr. Francis Adu-Febiri

January 26, 2012


Africa Calling is a great project to reduce the digital divide between developed and developing countries. Cell phones collected by Africa Calling will be an important social tool to provide people the opportunity to get connected with their families, access to critical health information, and conduct a wide range of business. It is also an environmentally friendly way to reduce the discarding of these cell phones to the landfill by extending their life cycle.  I hope you will be able to join together to support the work of Africa Calling by donating your used cell phones or to help organize collecting cell phones in your work place or city.

Dr. Francis Yee

Instructor of Geography

Camosun College

Victoria, BC


Africa Calling is an ambitious, student led initiative to engage with issues beyond our own backyard.  The recognition that discarded cell phones in our community open doors of opportunity for many different African communities is an example of small scale development that promotes sustainability, recycling, and collaboration with members of our global village.  As an anthropologist, I am proud that Camosun students are making the effort to be part of positive change in a culturally relative manner.

Nicole Kilburn, MA

Anthropology and Archaeology

Department of Social Sciences

Camosun College, Victoria


"Most of my clients cannot afford food in their stomachs, or a roof over their heads. Having a cell phone helps them find work, get a place to live, and reconnect with friends and family. In short, it helps them become a part of society again. “

Jordan Campbell, Outreach Worker

Our Place Society, Victoria, B.C.



These testimonials are from recipients of the first shipment of cell phones that were delivered by Africa Calling by two Camosun College professors in May 2011. Another trip is being planned for May 2012 to revisit these same recipients (70 in total) to check how these cell phones have improved their lives, and the lives of others in their communities. Thank you to everyone that has made this miracle possible.

Dear Students,

Some of the recipients said, they never thought they could ever have their own mobile phones. All the recipients expressed how the mobile phones would make a difference in their everyday lives. For example, one woman shared her experience of getting sick while returning from the farm and staying in the bush alone until she was found the following day because she had no phone to inform her relatives about her situation. She almost died. When she received the phone she was so thankful that this terrible experience would not be repeated. She wished every farmer in the community had a phone to avoid what she went through.

Another woman talked about being admitted to the hospital for a sudden miscarriage when she visited the market town to sell her produce. She couldn’t get in touch with any family members or friends because she had no access to a mobile phone. According to her, this miracle of receiving a free phone has changed her future.

In addition to the utility of cell phones in medical emergencies, such as these in the lives of the rural poor in Africa, the recipients were delighted that they could now connect with relatives and friends who lived outside their communities at a very low cost (incoming and outgoing texting is free, as well as incoming calls). They couldn't stop talking about the fact that their mobile phones would save them the money and time of visiting out-of village relatives and friends to discuss important matters in their relationships.

Dr. Francis Adu-Febiri