The Global Soil Week team has been trickling in to Nairobi since Wednesday evening with all hands on deck for Monday’s kick-off of the first African Soil Seminar. After a long year of planning and preparations, the first regional Soil Week for Africa is now less than 24 hours away. We are excited to say the least!

The Seminar will be held at the beautiful campus of the World Agroforestry Center in Nairobi, Kenya, and will provide a platform for governments, civil society, private business and academia to discuss and share knowledge around soil and landscape rehabilitation in support of the 2030 and 2063 sustainability agendas. Joint coordination, responsible investments and links between science and policy-making are integral to the process of implementing, monitoring, and following-up of big goals such as Agenda 2063 “The Future we want for Africa” and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, among many other initiatives for land and agriculture across the continent.

As Seminar attendees begin to arrive, we hope each and every one of them is ready for three days of illuminating conversation and dialogue in support of the success of these goals and sustainable agriculture in general. These seminars are meant to be a space to debate on the best way forward, to converse with our counterparts from other parts of the world, and ultimately, a catalyst for change.

Tonight, before all the madness begins in the morning, we will hold a small reception to welcome at least half of the two hundred speakers, participants, and Ministers expected to join us this week. Live streaming of plenary sessions will be available on the Global Soil Week website and live social reporting can be followed on Twitter with #AfSS2016. If you are not physically able to be at the seminar, please make sure to join the conversation online and share your thoughts and questions with us throughout the next few days. We would love to hear from you!

Special thanks to our partners: the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock & Fisheries of Kenya, the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources of Ethiopia, the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of Benin, the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Water Resources of Burkina Faso, and New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). And our co-hosts: Groupe de Recherche et d’Action sur le Foncier, Burkina Faso (GRAF), World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN), Network of African National Human Rights Institution (NANHRI), Töpfer Müller Gaßner GmbH (TMG Think Tank), and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).

Here’s to a successful first African Soil Seminar, and more joint activities to come!