By Emma Okonji
Facebook has announced the launch of the Facebook Community Leadership Programme, a global initiative that invests in people building communities. The platform will commit tens of millions of dollars to the programme, including up to $10 million in grants that will go directly to people creating and leading communities.
In addition, Facebook introduced new tools for group admins and the expansion of the companyâ€™s London-based engineering team that builds technology to help keep people safe on Facebook.
Head of Groups and Community at Facebook,Â Jennifer Dulski,Â and Vice President, Product Partnerships, Facebook,Â Ime Archibong, jointly made the announcementÂ at the Facebook Communities Summit Europe recently.
More than 300 community leaders from across Europe came together in London including Blind Veterans UK, an advocacy organisation that provides practical and emotional support to blind veterans and their families.
Also present were Donna Mamma, a support group for mothers in France to share advice and information; Girl Skate UK, which celebrates and brings together the female skateboarding community; and High Society PL, a group of sneaker enthusiasts who bond over their shared passion.
Community leaders often tell Facebook that with additional support they could have more impact. The Facebook Community Leadership Programme is designed to empower leaders from around the world who are building communities through the Facebook family of apps and services. It includes: Residency and Fellowship opportunities offer training, support and funding for community leaders from around the world.
Up to five leaders will be selected to be community leaders in residence and awarded up to $1,000,000* each to fund their proposals. Up to 100 leaders will be selected for Facebookâ€™s fellowship program and will receive up to $50,000* each to be used for a specific community initiative.
Community Leadership Circles bring local community leaders together to meet up in person to connect, learn, and collaborate. Facebook piloted three circles in the US in 2017 and will be expanding globally this year.