Earlier this month, two KujaLink team mates: Dawit Dessie and Angelina Ndungu attended a Climate Justice-Just Transition (CJ-JT) Donor Collaborative retreat. This retreat brought together youth movement leaders, change-makers, and funders from around the world. The 3-day retreat was held in Bonn, Germany.  

KujaLink is Adeso’s online platform solution to increasing visibility for local and national civil society organizations doing the front line work and linking them to funders around the world.

The CJ-JT Collaborative consists of foundations that are looking for ways to scale up and improve social justice and climate action work. The goal of this collaborative is to invest in local civil society and grassroots groups in ways that shift power and resources to the people on the front lines. 

The aim of the CJ-JT Collaborative aligns with Adeso’s vision.  And this has led to a fruitful partnership where connections are made between local CSOs and funders both through CJ-JT and through the KujaLink platform.

Below are some reflections of the retreat from Dawit and his journey from Nairobi to Bonn. This blog reflects on the purpose, pillars, and partners of this transformative initiative, highlighting the power of collaboration and the potential for meaningful change.


KujaLink team attends Climate Justice - Just Transition Donor Collaborative Event in Bonn, Germany in June 2023.


Making Meaningful Connections in Person and through KujaLink between Youth for Climate Justice and Climate Justice Funders

By Dawit Dessie, Community Manager at KujaLink, a social enterprise initiative of Adeso

Date: 30 June 2023


The Climate Justice-Just Transition (CJ-JT) Donor Collaborative retreat has been an awe-inspiring journey, marked by collective action and a shared vision for a sustainable future. Through a co-design process that brought together frontline groups, marginalized communities, and funders, the retreat showcased the immense power of collective action. In this collaborative space, we identified critical gaps in philanthropy for climate justice. Through doing that, we are paving the way for a platform that fosters meaningful change. KujaLink is the perfect platform and catalyst for helping make these connections.

Purpose: Consolidating Needs, Ideas, and Principles

The retreat’s purpose, which was to consolidate needs, ideas, and principles, resonates deeply within us. It constantly reminds us that our collective efforts are dedicated to connecting, sharing best practices, and envisioning a well-resourced network for youth-focused initiatives in the Global South. It is through this purpose that we drive towards a more just and sustainable world.

Pillars: A Multifaceted Approach

The retreat had three pillars.  They were (1) coordinating and growing the current youth funding ecosystem, (2) accelerating on-the-ground youth-led solutions, and (3) enhancing international advocacy and campaigning. These three pillars exemplify our multifaceted approach to creating lasting change. Each pillar represents a vital aspect of our mission, emphasizing the significance of collaboration, support, and advocacy.

Flourishing Collaboration and Unity

Throughout the co-design process, collaboration, trust, and connection flourished among the participants. These relationships have provided invaluable insights, profound learnings, and explored synergies. The unity and shared purpose that permeate the retreat fill us with hope and fuel our motivation to drive meaningful change.

The CJ-JT Donor Collaborative retreat has been a catalyst for transformative change, emphasizing the power of collective action, collaboration, and advocacy. As we move forward, empowering youth and building a well-resourced network for climate justice in the Global South remains at the core of our mission. Together, we can drive meaningful change and create a more just and sustainable world for future generations.

KujaLink Connections: Exciting Plans for the Future

Looking ahead, we have exciting plans in store. We are organizing a compelling convening with youth re-granters who participated in the retreat. And we are creating a dynamic mapping of organizations working in the climate justice space, utilizing the KujaLink platform. As youth activists take the lead, we are developing a guiding document for youth re-granters to employ, encouraging funders to allocate funds through the KujaLink platform. This process will introduce new approaches like participatory grantmaking for grantees. Our goal is to onboard many more climate justice groups based in the global south to the KujaLink platform.  We hope to achieve these milestones by September, a significant step forward for the Climate Justice-Just Transition (CJ-JT) Donor Collaborative.


We thank the Climate Justice – Just Transition Donor Collaborative for the partnership and financial support for this important work.

If you and your organization are interested in joining KujaLink please reach out to Halima, KujaLink’s Community Manager at community@kujalink.org for more information.